The US offshore wind industry faces numerous challenges that have delayed its success. Chief among them is the absence of a coherent national energy policy that acknowledges our global responsibility to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Federal financial support for emerging energy industries is fragmented and inconsistent; the policy framework lacks commitment to specific targets and timeframes for renewable energy development that drive successful overseas offshore wind markets.
America needs a long-term vision to put the industry’s early-stage challenges in context. Higher costs for offshore wind today are an investment in future price stability, job creation and greenhouse gas reduction, but are portrayed only as unacceptable electricity rate-payer impacts. The newness of the technology in this country is viewed as an insurmountable barrier rather than an opportunity for innovation. States and developers are working hard to move projects forward, but the focus is on competition to build the first project rather than the collective effort to build a robust, efficient industry at a scale that will drive down costs.
The US Offshore Wind Collaborative is responding to these challenges with a new vision for the future of offshore wind development.