Hawaii Activities

Hawaii

What’s New?

October 15, 2021 - The National Renewable Energy Laboratory has published The Cost and Feasibility of Floating Offshore Wind Energy in the O’ahu Region. This study provides estimates of the Levelized Cost of Energy (LCOE) of offshore wind in the region surrounding O’ahu and investigates related topics relevant to planning for offshore wind.

Efforts Under Way

BOEM is working closely with the State of Hawaii to determine potential path forward for offshore wind planning in the state.

Public Engagement

BOEM established the BOEM/Hawaii Intergovernmental Renewable Energy Task Force to promote planning and coordination, and to facilitate effective and efficient review of requests for commercial and research leases and right-of-way grants for power cables on the Federal outer continental shelf (OCS). Members of the Task Force include representatives of Federal, state and local government agencies, and offices who regularly engage with members of the Native Hawaiian community. BOEM also coordinates public information meetings to help keep interested stakeholders updated on major renewable energy milestones. To obtain information discussed during these meetings click on the links below.

  • Public Comment Period extended to September 7, 2016:
    • Public comments filed through Regulations.gov (Docket No. BOEM-2016-0049) can be found here
    • A compilation of public comments filed outside of Regulations.gov (listed in no particular order) can be found here
    • Federal Register Notice - Environmental Assessment for Commercial Wind Leasing and Site Assessment Activities on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Offshore the Island of Oahu, Hawaii; Extension of Comment Period

Environmental Studies

BOEM has funded or considered numerous studies to collect information about the marine environment to support decisions concerning offshore renewable energy development. For more information, please visit https://www.boem.gov/environment/environmental-studies-pacific.

Related Press Releases

Background

Several unsolicited lease requests for wind energy development offshore of Oahu, Hawaii were submitted to BOEM.  The Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Lands Act requires BOEM to award leases competitively, unless BOEM determines there is no competitive interest. BOEM has determined that there may be competitive interest in developing all or portions of the Oahu Call Area and has published a “Call for Information and Nominations” and a “Notice of Intent to Prepare an Environmental Assessment.” Comment period for both announcements are now closed. Please see below for more information.

Unsolicited Lease Requests

2014-2015: BOEM has received a total of three unsolicited wind energy lease requests from two potential developers: two lease requests from AW Hawaii Wind, LLC (AWH), the AWH Oahu Northwest Project and the AWH Oahu South Project; and one from Progression Hawaii Offshore Wind, Inc. (Progression), the Progression South Coast of Oahu Project. Each project proposes an offshore floating wind energy facility with a capacity of approximately 400 megawatts (MW) of renewable energy. The energy generated by the projects would be transmitted to Oahu by undersea cables.

Call for Information and Nominations

June 24, 2016: BOEM published a “Call for Information and Nominations” (Call) to seek additional nominations from companies interested in commercial wind energy leases within the Call area offshore Hawaii (see map below). BOEM also sought public input on the potential for wind development in the Call Area, including comments on site conditions, resources, and existing uses of the area that would be relevant to BOEM’s wind energy development authorization process. The comment period is now closed. BOEM is now in the Area Identification stage of the leasing process, during which BOEM will identify areas for environmental analysis and consideration for leasing. Materials relating to the “Call” are below. 

Notice of Intent to Prepare an Environmental Assessment

June 24, 2016: BOEM announced its intent to prepare an Environmental Assessment (EA) of potential commercial wind leasing and site assessment activities on the ocean continental shelf offshore the island of Oahu, Hawaii. The EA will address environmental impacts and socioeconomic effects related to the proposed action, issuance of one or more commercial wind energy leases and approval of site assessment activities on those leases. This notice informed the public of BOEM’s intent to prepare an Environmental Assessment (EA) of potential commercial wind leasing and site assessment activities on the OCS offshore the island of Oahu, Hawaii. The EA will address environmental impacts and socioeconomic effects related to the proposed action, issuance of one or more commercial wind energy leases and approval of site assessment activities on those leases.

This notice also serves to announce the beginning of the formal scoping process. Scoping will help identify reasonable alternatives to the proposed action, focus the analysis in the EA on potentially significant issues, and eliminate those issues that are determined to be insignificant or considered irrelevant to the analysis. BOEM will also use the scoping process to seek public comment on the full range of potential environmental impacts, including input relevant to the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA). The comment period is now closed. For more information, please use the links below.