Go Big On Offshore Wind

Planning for offshore wind in California

Environment California weighs in as the state prepares a strategic plan for offshore wind development.

Wind power

Tom Buysse | Shutterstock.com
According to our research, offshore wind in the Gulf of Mexico could meet 166% of Texas’ current electricity needs.

Environment California intern, Angela Abuda, testified on behalf of Environment California on October 6th at the California Energy Commission (CEC) Workshop on Assembly Bill 525 regarding the creation of a strategic plan for offshore wind development. Her comments are included below. Offshore wind is a key piece of the puzzle to reach California’s vision of 100% clean, renewable energy. While California is leading the nation in several renewable technologies like solar, the state only ranks 12th in the growth of wind generation over the last decade according new data from the 2022 Renewables on the Rise dashboard. The state’s new plans to go big on offshore wind should help wind power in California grow to new levels and strengthen our efforts to become a national leader in offshore wind.

“We were encouraged by the CEC’s action a few months ago to set goals of 5 gigawatts by 2030 and 25 gigawatts by 2045,” Abuda testified. “Environment California was a sponsor of AB 525. Environment California and Environment America have been working on offshore wind around the country for over ten years.

First, I want to thank the staff and the stakeholders who are joining us today. Offshore wind is critical to reaching our goals laid out in SB 100 and we encourage all the stakeholders to continue to meet and talk about the differences we have in a respectful and professional environment.

Second, President Biden has set goals of 30 gigawatts by 2030 and 110 gigawatts by 2045. The only way we are going to meet these goals is if all the coastal states take this issue seriously and come to the table to figure out how to tap into offshore wind in a fashion that brings clean energy to the country and still protects the beautiful places within the ocean. 

Third, as the CEC considers the economic opportunities associated with offshore wind, please look beyond the basic economics of profit and loss. For example-

Offshore wind has the potential to create thousands of great jobs. This industry has the potential to be a key driver as we move away from fossil fuels and toward a clean energy economy.

Offshore wind also has the opportunity to reduce pollution. This is a very difficult economic indicator to calculate, but it is critical that we significantly reduce pollution (both carbon and air pollution) as soon as possible.

Finally it is critical for the CEC to consider the cost that climate change is wreaking on our economy now. The wildfires, droughts, sea level rise, and other climate impacts all have the ability to cripple our economy. Making investments now in offshore wind is the smartest thing we can do.

Even as a student I know these decisions are not easy, but I can tell you that making these decisions now makes my life and the lives of my future kids and grandkids a lot better.”

Angela Abuda

Clean Energy Intern, Environment California

See the Campaign

Show More