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NYPA Trustees Select Five Firms to Perform a Wide Range of Studies for the Great Lakes Wind Project

Connie M. Cullen

June 30, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                           

LEWISTON—New York Power Authority (NYPA) President and Chief Executive Officer Richard M. Kessel today announced the approval by the Board of Trustees of five firms to perform technical studies on different aspects of NYPA’s proposed Great Lakes Offshore Wind Project. 

“Having broad-based teams of technical consultants gives the Power Authority the ability to choose from among a cadre of wind power experts to assist with studying the diverse subjects we need to understand to evaluate the viability of the Great Lakes Offshore Wind Project,” said Kessel.  “In order to realize Governor Paterson’s ambitious “45 by 15” clean energy goals, we must be prepared to gather and assess information on a wide range of critical issues and these firms were selected for their ability to do just that for NYPA.” 

Each of the five firms serves as the lead for their own team of consultants they assembled to add, enhance or expand specialized wind power expertise needed to perform and evaluate the technical studies for the project.  The five firms are:  AWS Truewind, LLC, Albany; DNV, Global Energy Concepts, Inc., Seattle, Wash., and Lowell, Mass.; ESS Group, Inc., East Providence, R.I.; Germanischer Lloyd Industrial Services, Hamburg, Germany with several North American offices; and Hatch Acres Corporation, Amherst. 

“With today’s action, the Power Authority is making a major contribution to expanding the knowledge needed to develop the world’s first freshwater wind project in the Great Lakes,” said NYPA Chairman Michael J. Townsend. “NYPA is committed to working towards expanding the use of clean, renewable energy sources and the Great Lakes project will help contribute to New York’s Renewable Portfolio Standard to have 25 percent of its electricity produced by renewable sources by 2013.”  

“The Power Authority is exploring the possibility of harnessing the Great Lakes winds to combine the benefits of clean energy with the new jobs and business opportunities that the wind power industry can bring to Western New York,” said NYPA Trustee D. Patrick Curley, a resident of Orchard Park.   

“These five firms have extensive experience in tasks ranging from modeling offshore and Great Lakes wind to performing the necessary environmental assessments to understanding weather and site selection criteria, which are important components for the evaluation of a wind power project,” said NYPA Trustee Elise M. Cusack from Eggertsville.  

The Trustees also authorized today for the NYPA staff to enter into a contract with each firm for up to five years pending final agreement of contract terms, with a total funding cap of $5 million for this project and other wind power initiatives.  It is expected that NYPA will begin working with one or more of the firms by mid-summer.  

On April 22, in recognition of Earth Day, President Kessel announced a major initiative for the potential development of wind power projects in the New York State waters of Lake Erie and Lake Ontario.  The five firms selected resulted from a Request for Proposals (RFP) seeking assistance in the examination of technical issues related to the viability of offshore wind projects.  The RFP was issued on April 27 with responses due on May 19. 

NYPA also released a Request for Expressions of Interest (RFEI), on April 22, asking for economic development, technical, operational, socio-economic, financial and other information from the wind power industry to assist in the understanding of the efforts needed to develop offshore wind projects in the Great Lakes.  Sixteen RFEIs were received and will be evaluated by one or more of the firms selected today as a result of the RFP.

About NYPA: 

■    The New York Power Authority uses no tax money or state credit.  It finances its operations through the sale of bonds and revenues earned in large part through sales of electricity. ■    NYPA is a leader in promoting energy efficiency, new energy technologies and electric transportation initiatives.  ■    It is the nation's largest state-owned electric utility, with 18 generating facilities in various parts of New York State and more than 1,400 circuit-miles of transmission lines.  ■    About 75 percent of the electricity it produces is clean renewable hydropower.  Its lower-cost power production and electricity purchases support hundreds of thousands of jobs throughout the state.  ■   For more information,

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