Dominion Energy’s Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind (CVOW) commercial project reached a regulatory milestone as the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management announced it has completed its environmental analysis of the 2.6 GW project planned off the Virginia Beach coast.
The final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) reflects feedback from Tribal Nations, ocean users, local communities, the offshore wind industry and other interested stakeholders, and analyses potential environmental impacts and mitigation measures associated with CVOW’s construction. The Notice of Availability for the final EIS will publish in the Federal Register on Friday, September 29, 2023.
“The completion of CVOW’s environmental review is important to keep the project on time and on budget. Regulated offshore wind has many benefits for our customers and local economies – it’s fuel free, emissions free, and diversifies our fuel mix to maintain the reliability of the grid,” said Bob Blue, Dominion Energy’s Chair, President, and CEO. “Today’s announcement reinforces the confidence that the company, our vendors and our suppliers have in our project’s completion, providing further motivation to maintain focus on delivering on time and on budget knowing we and our government partners continue to meet critical milestones.”
As the largest offshore wind project under development in the United States, CVOW will produce enough carbon-free electricity for 660 000 Virginia homes and generate expected fuel savings of more than US$3 billion for customers during the project’s first 10 years of operation.
The EIS reflects public comments as well as extensive studies, evaluations, and designs to maximise CVOW’s environmental benefits and minimise potential impacts. This includes actions taken offshore to minimise impacts to marine life, such as North Atlantic right whales, and actions taken onshore to design and build a transmission route that avoids impacts to natural and cultural resources and environmental justice communities to the maximum extent possible.
Dominion Energy is proposing to construct 176 14.7 MW wind turbines and three offshore substations in a 112 800 acre commercial lease area located 27 miles off the Virginia Beach coast