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Crowley, Humboldt Bay to Build State's First Wind Hub

Tue December 13, 2022 - West Edition #26

(Crowley photo)
(Crowley photo)

Crowley has signed an agreement with the Port of Humboldt Bay to exclusively negotiate to be the developer and operator of a terminal to serve as California's first hub for offshore wind energy installations.

Through Crowley's Wind Services group, the company will enter into negotiations with the port to lease and serve as the port's developer of the Humboldt Bay Offshore Wind Heavy Lift Marine Terminal. The services provided will support tenants in the manufacturing, installation and operation of offshore wind floating platforms, use of large heavy cargo vessels and providing crewing and marshalling services in the Pacific waters.

This public-private partnership will support both federal and state government goals to develop more American offshore wind power and reduce greenhouse-gas emissions. The U.S. Department of Interior announced that waters off the coast of Humboldt Bay areas will be part of the first offshore wind lease sale on the U.S. West Coast on Dec. 6.

California has set a goal to create at least 5 GW of offshore wind energy by 2030. The Humbold offshore wind areas alone are projected to provide 1.6 GW of energy, capable of supply power to up to 1.6 million homes. The federal lease auction also will include the Morro Bay area, which offers 3 GW of projected energy.

Utilizing a grant from the Humboldt County Headwaters Fund in 2021, the Port of Humboldt Bay developed a conceptual master plan for the site. That led to a $10.45 million grant from the California Energy Commission to conduct of technical studies, preliminary design and pre-permitting activities. The port anticipates completing permitting and design in mid-2024. The new agreement with Crowley focuses on a 98-acre Phase 1, with options to expand on adjoining land in additional phases.

Humboldt Bay will mark Crowley's second dedicated US wind service terminal project. Design and engineering are underway in Salem, Massachusetts, for the Crowley terminal as part of a public-private partnership that will support offshore wind projects in New England.

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