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Empire Offshore Wind cancels Seatrium contract

Photo: Unsplash wind turbines at sea
Empire Offshore Wind, a joint venture between Norwegian state company, Equinor, and energy major bp, have pulled out of a wind farm contract at Seatrium valued at more than $250 million.

The 1,260MW offshore substation platform was a key component in Empire Wind 2 which has now been cancelled following an agreement between the Empire Offshore Wind partners Equinor and bp, and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA).

The agreement reflects changed economic circumstances on an industry-wide scale, the partners said, adding that the decision recognises commercial conditions driven by inflation, interest rates, and supply chain disruptions that prevented viable development of the wind project. Empire Wind 1, on which construction work began in the fourth quarter of 2023, remains unaffected and continues as planned.

However, cancellation of the project, off the coast of Long Island, is yet another blow to offshore wind development in the US. It comes after developers showed virtually no interest in the US Bureau of Energy Management’s auction of offshore acreage in the Gulf of Mexico last August.

Other contracts have also been cancelled recently including Commonwealth Wind, Park City Wind, and SouthCoast Wind because developers have been unable to finance the projects.  

Seatrium said that cancellation of the contract is not expected to have a material financial impact on the group’s earnings per share and net tangible asset per share in the current financial year. Construction work had been expected to begin in June 2024.