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Statoil to explore potential for offshore wind off the coast of New York

James Leynse | Corbis Documentary | Getty Images

Statoil is set to explore the potential for an offshore wind farm that it says could provide both New York City and Long Island with "a significant, long-term source of renewable energy."

Last week, the U.S. Department of the Interior announced that Statoil was the provisional winner of a lease sale for 79,350 acres off the coast of New York. Statoil's winning bid was $42,469,725.

"We are excited to have submitted the most competitive bid in a highly attractive project, Statoil's first offshore wind lease in the United States," Irene Rummelhoff, Statoil's executive vice president for new energy solutions, said in a statement.

"We now look forward to working with New York's state agencies and contribute to New York meeting its future energy needs by applying our offshore experience and engineering expertise," Rummelhoff added.

Statoil said that the lease area has the potential to "accommodate" over one gigawatt of offshore wind.

"The US is a key emerging market for offshore wind – both bottom-fixed and floating – with significant potential along both the east and west coasts," Rummelhoff went on to say.

Offshore wind energy does appear to be gaining momentum in the U.S.

America's first offshore wind farm – situated off the coast of Rhode Island – recently commenced commercial operations and is now sending electricity to New England's grid.

The Block Island Wind Farm is a 30 megawatt, five turbine installation. A submarine transmission cable system links the energy produced by the wind farm to the grid.