Once completed, the 130-megawatt offshore wind farm will address a growing reliability challenge for Long Island’s electrical grid, while also generating enough renewable energy to power approximately 70,000 Long Island homes, eliminating up to six million tons of carbon emissions, or the equivalent of taking 60,000 cars off the road annually over a 25-year period.
“New York is paving the way towards a clean energy future, and the installation of our first offshore wind turbine marks a momentous step forward,” Hochul said. “We are not only generating clean energy, but also pioneering a healthy and safe environment for future generations of New Yorkers. We are shaping a brighter, greener tomorrow, committed to a future where innovation and sustainability go hand in hand."
The first of South Fork Wind’s 12 Siemens Gamesa wind turbine generators was hoisted into place by the offshore construction team at the project site 35 miles off Montauk, N.Y. Hundreds of U.S. workers and three Northeast ports have supported South Fork Wind’s construction. All 12 turbines are expected to be installed by the end of 2023 or early 2024.
Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer of New York said, “The installation of the first offshore wind turbine to power New York is a milestone moment in our state’s and the nation’s transition to clean, green energy. Once complete by early next year, South Fork Wind will provide enough power for 70,000 Long Island households and families. This is the first of many clean energy projects that will transform New York’s power grid and economy."
First approved by the LIPA Board of Trustees in 2017, South Fork Wind began construction in February 2022, beginning with the onshore export cable system that links the project to the local energy grid, which was completed early this year. The wind farm reached its “steel in the water” milestone in June 2023 with the installation of the project’s first monopile foundation.
Van Oord’s offshore installation vessel, the Aeolus, is installing the turbines. Turbine installation involves using a crane to place the steel turbine tower onto the foundation. The nacelle and rotor are then installed on top of the tower. Lastly, the blades are lifted and installed one by one by bolting them to the rotor.
Once in operation, South Fork Wind will be supported by U.S.-built crew transfer vessels and eventually by America’s first offshore wind Service Operations Vessel.
The announcement builds on the momentum established by Hocul's announcement earlier this month, which publicized the largest state investment in renewable energy in United States history. The conditional awards included three offshore wind and 22 land-based renewable energy projects totaling 6.4 gigawatts of clean energy, enough to power 2.6 million New York homes and deliver approximately 12 percent of New York’s electricity needs once completed. When coupled with two marquee offshore wind blade and nacelle manufacturing facilities, this portfolio of newly announced projects is expected to create approximately 8,300 family-sustaining jobs and spur $20 billion in economic development investments statewide, including developer-committed investments to support disadvantaged communities.