Ørsted leases space for offshore wind staging at Portsmouth Marine Terminal
Lease could be worth $13M plus $20M in improvements
Denmark-based energy company Ørsted has agreed to lease a portion of the Portsmouth Marine Terminal from the Virginia Port Authority to stage materials and equipment for Dominion Energy’s offshore wind project, Gov. Ralph Northam announced Tuesday. The Virginia Port Authority Board of Commissioners unanimously voted to ratify the agreement.
Ørsted will use the space for its work on Dominion Energy’s Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind (CVOW) project, as well as for staging materials and equipment for other East Coast projects. The agreement is for a lease of 1.7 acres at the Portsmouth Marine Terminal (one of the Port of Virginia’s two multiuse terminals in the Norfolk Harbor) with options to expand an additional 40 acres. The entire terminal covers 287 acres and has on-dock rail access.
The CVOW project is a pilot project for Dominion’s larger plans for a $7.8 billion, 220-turbine wind farm 27 miles off the coast of Virginia Beach by 2026. The wind farm, which would be the largest in the nation, is being proposed as part of Dominion’s initiative to reduce its carbon emissions by 55% in the next decade and 80% by 2050. The project would produce enough zero-carbon electricity to power 650,000 Virginia homes. Dominion has selected Spanish renewable energy engineering company Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy S.A. as the preferred turbine supplier for the proposed wind farm.
“This is a big step towards making Virginia a leader in wind energy and offshore wind manufacturing,” Northam said in a statement. “With the Port of Virginia at its helm, the Hampton Roads region has the trained workforce and the nautical know-how to become a vital hub for offshore wind development.”
The lease could run through at least 2026, and be worth nearly $13 million in lease payments and include more than $20 million in improvements to the terminal’s berth to handle the heavy load capacity necessary for the massive offshore-wind turbine components.
“This is a strategic decision by leaders in the offshore wind industry to take advantage of Virginia’s world-class port,” John F. Reinhart, CEO and executive director of the Virginia Port Authority, said in a statement. “The result is job creation, economic investment, diversification of the Virginia economy, and clean, renewable energy.”