Dominion Energy Continues the production of the First Jones Act of the offshore wind turbine installation vessel. The vessel is expected to be available to support U.S. offshore wind turbine installations by the end of 2023.
RICHMOND, Va. Dominion Energy reported today that it has achieved a significant milestone – keel laying – in the construction of the first offshore wind turbine installation vessel, currently under construction by the multinational shipping company Keppel AmFELS at its Brownsville, Texas shipyard. With several gigawatts of offshore wind energy to be installed in the U.S. In the next decade, access to the Jones Act to offshore wind turbine construction vessels is of strategic significance to the U.S. offshore wind industry.
"Dominion Energy is proud to lead a consortium of respected industry members in the construction of the first offshore wind turbine installation vessel compliant with Jones Act, which will provide significant American employment and provide a reliable, home-grown installation solution capable of managing large-scale high-efficiency turbine technologies in the next decade.
“Offshore wind is bringing clean energy and new jobs to America, and Virginia is leading the way," said Governor Ralph Northam. "This new vessel will help propel the offshore wind supply chain, drive economic development in Hampton Roads, and grow the offshore wind workforce in our Commonwealth. We are thrilled to celebrate great news like this in what has been a challenging year.
The construction of the first Jones Act respecting offshore wind turbine installation vessel serves as another critical link in the increasing domestic production supply chain to support offshore wind energy growth here in the U.S.
This initiative represents a major step in the creation of a domestic production supply chain to sustain a multi-gigawatt potential for zero-carbon electricity generation in U.S. waters. Dominion Energy expects the vessel to be completely used to enable the construction of more than 5 gigawatts of proposed offshore wind generation off the U.S. East Coast through 2027 and beyond.
The vessel is expected to create nearly 700 direct construction jobs. The ship's hull and facilities would use more than 14,000 tonnes of domestic steel, with almost 10,000 tonnes coming from Alabama and West Virginia suppliers. The vessel's hull is 472 feet long, 184 feet wide and 38 feet deep, making it one of the largest vessels of its kind in the world. It has rooms for up to 119 people. The vessel is designed to accommodate both existing turbine technology and next generation turbine sizes of 12 megawatts or more and will also be capable of laying the foundations for turbines and other heavy lifts.
The total cost of the project, including construction and commissioning, minus funding costs, is expected to be about $500 million. The financing of the vessel was structured via a lease financing deal with leading global banks. Construction and funding expenses would not affect the bills of customers of Dominion Energy Virginia.
Dominion Energy has contracted with Keppel AmFELS, a wholly-owned U.S. subsidiary of Keppel Offshore & Marine Ltd, for the engineering, procurement and construction of offshore wind turbine installation vessels. The vessel is designed by GustoMSC, the NOV business unit.
"We are pleased to be able to build the largest wind turbine installation vessel for Dominion Energy and to support the growing offshore wind industry.”
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