AUSTIN - Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland announced today plans to deploy 30 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind energy by 2030, including in the Gulf of Mexico. A newly released leasing schedule projects that the Interior Department will decide on an area of the Gulf to lease by early 2022, with a lease sale by the end of that year. Last year, the federal government identified Port Isabel and Port Arthur as viable sites for offshore wind, among the best in the Gulf. A March report by Environment Texas Research and Policy Center found that offshore wind has the technical potential to provide Texas with 166% of its electricity needs. In July, Environment Texas joined with other Gulf state environmental organizations to submit comments to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management in support of responsible development of offshore wind in the Gulf. The groups wrote that "offshore wind provides a tremendous opportunity to fight climate change, reduce local and regional air pollution, and grow a new industry that will support thousands of well-paying jobs in both coastal and inland communities."
Environment Texas Executive Director Luke Metzger, a longtime advocate for renewable energy in the state of Texas, released the following statement:
“We applaud Sec. Haaland and the Biden Administration for moving forward with bold and speedy plans to develop the nation's offshore wind resources. With strong winds in the evenings when we need energy the most, offshore wind in the Gulf of Mexico would greatly complement Texas’ onshore renewable energy resources and help us achieve 100% clean power. We can put the infrastructure and expertise we developed for offshore drilling to work developing this abundant, clean resource.”