Northern California and Southern Oregon Offshore Wind Transmission Study

J. Zoellick, G. Adams, A. Mustafa, Aubryn Cooperman, R. Anilkumar, Patrick Duffy, A. Sparks, S. Kramer, S. Trush, S. Bernstein, C. Butler, A. Porter, A. Herath, M. Cesario, E. Wallach, C. Ingvoldsen, D. Wakeman, C. Chamberlin, A. Jacobson

Research output: NRELTechnical Report


Offshore wind (OSW) power based on floating technology in the coastal waters of the U.S. Pacific Ocean has great potential to contribute to climate mitigation and renewable energy goals in California, Oregon, and other parts of the western U.S. To achieve development of OSW at scale, investments in transmission infrastructure are needed to deliver this power to major metropolitan areas because these are the primary electricity load centers. Currently the transmission infrastructure serving coastal regions where OSW is most likely to be developed has limited capacity and is designed to bring power from the east to serve modest coastal loads. The development of OSW generation and the interconnection of this resource to the bulk power grid will require major investments in new transmission infrastructure and upgrades to existing infrastructure. This study investigated the development of up to 25.8 GW of OSW energy on the northern coast of California and the southern coast of Oregon. The focus of the study was to assess various transmission alternatives that could deliver OSW power to distant load centers while also providing energy benefits to rural coastal communities near to where OSW power may be developed.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages123
StatePublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

Report includes Volume 1 ( and Volume 2 - Appendices (

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-5000-87090


  • Northern California
  • offshore wind
  • Oregon
  • rural coastal communities
  • transmission


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