Why the Southeast

Overview PHOTO: Iberdrola Renewables

Overview

The Southeastern states are extremely well-positioned to be long-term leaders in the offshore wind industry, but we need regional focus and leadership to achieve that potential. The region has some compelling competitive advantages that are currently not well understood. The SECWC works to highlight these competitive advantages and improve the general understanding of the costs and benefits for coastal and offshore wind to leaders in the region.

Wind Resource

According to the National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL), Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia have 45% of the total East Coast resource and 82% of the resource in shallow water and more than 12 miles offshore. Florida’s offshore wind resource was not quantified in this study. Offshore wind and biomass also represent the two largest scale renewable energy options for the Southeastern U.S.    More >

 
Market

The five Southeastern coastal states represent five of the six largest electricity markets on the East Coast with high per-capita electricity consumption and five of the six fastest growing populations, all of which point to above average electricity demand growth and an ability to absorb larger levels of land-based and offshore wind development.  More >

 
Cost

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimates that North Carolina, Georgia, South Carolina, and Virginia have the lowest construction costs for offshore wind energy of all the East Coast states. Florida was not included in this study. This advantage results in 1) lower capital and energy costs from offshore wind; and 2) a competitive advantage for manufacturers that choose to locate facilities in the region.  More >

 
Utility Structure

The Southeastern states have vertically integrated and regulated utilities that generate revenue by investing in capital and earning a regulated return on that investment.  Wind energy, and particularly offshore wind, is well-suited to this model as it requires high upfront capital, has low ongoing O&M costs and has no fuel costs.   More >

 
Regional Approach

The Southeastern states have vertically integrated and regulated utilities that generate revenue by investing in capital and earning a regulated return on that investment.  Wind energy, and particularly offshore wind, is well-suited to this model as it requires high upfront capital, has low ongoing O&M costs and has no fuel costs.   More >