Offshore Sector Gathers Second Wind After Several Setbacks

Players in and observers of U.S. offshore wind energy say the sector is showing encouraging signs of recovery and progress after in the past year producing a series of headlines about investment write-downs, project exits and attempts to secure higher future prices. Lots of work remains to be done to complete those plans but it appears unlikely they’ll face the same buffeting that projects started a few years ago have had to endure. Those developments—which include the Empire Wind 2 plan, whose contract Equinor and bp canceled early this year—faced something of a perfect storm: After developers penciled out business models and secured power purchase contracts before the arrival of COVID-19, supply-chain snarls caused by the pandemic jacked up prices for the materials and equipment they needed and the Federal Reserve’s interest-rate hikes added immensely to their financing costs.

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