Many issues associated with wind development in the Great Lakes will require solutions different from those developed for offshore wind in ocean states and may not fully benefit from the industry learnings of nearby states. As a result, technology readiness and cost reduction for Great Lakes Wind (GLW) energy generation is likely to be delayed relative to other regions without a substantial, targeted GLW research campaign, and proactive stakeholder engagement in the region at all levels. Failure to conduct the necessary research to lower GLW costs in the near term could limit its contribution to the Nation's decarbonization goals by 2035, and could potentially raise long term energy prices in Great Lakes states if demand for renewable energy continues to accelerate. The overall objective of a research program such as that described in this report would be to enable the realization of commercial GLW before 2035. With the aim of ensuring that prospective development of GLW is conducted efficiently, safely, and coordinated in the best interests of the local residents and stakeholders, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Wind Energy Technologies Office (WETO) tasked the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) to assist in (a) developing an improved understanding of offshore wind power's development potential in the Great Lakes, (b) identifying the key issues that need to be resolved for this potential to be achieved, and (c) defining a comprehensive research program to address and resolve these issues. This report presents the results of NREL's effort to address these needs.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages165
StatePublished - 2023

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-5000-84605


  • cost modeling
  • environmental
  • fixed bottom foundations
  • floating wind
  • Great Lakes
  • grid
  • human use
  • ice
  • Illinois
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • New York
  • offshore wind
  • Ohio
  • Pennsylvania
  • stakeholder
  • turbines
  • Wisconsin
  • workforce


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