The US Department of the Interior (DOI) said that the New York Bight offshore wind lease sale has drawn competitive winning bids totaling $4.37bn from six companies.

The Biden administration had announced the lease sale in June 2021, offering six areas in the New York Bight totaling more than 488,000 acres for potential offshore wind energy development. New York Bight is an area of shallow waters between Long Island in New York and the New Jersey coast.

According to the DOI, the provisional winners of the lease sale are OW Ocean Winds East, Attentive Energy, Bight Wind, Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind Bight, Invenergy Wind Offshore, and Mid-Atlantic Offshore Wind.

The department said that the New York Bight lease sale can potentially lead to powering approximately two million homes with new offshore wind energy.

Prior to the finalisation of the leases, the Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission will undertake an anti-competitiveness review of the auction. The provisional winners will have to pay the winning bids and give financial assurance to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM), said DOI.

DOI Secretary Deb Haaland said: “This week’s offshore wind sale makes one thing clear: the enthusiasm for the clean energy economy is undeniable and it’s here to stay.

“The investments we are seeing today will play an important role in delivering on the Biden-Harris administration’s commitment to tackle the climate crisis and create thousands of good-paying, union jobs across the nation.”

The highest bidder of the New York Bight offshore wind lease sale was Bight Wind, a joint venture between RWE and the UK’s National Grid, which won 125,964 acres with a bid of $1.1bn.

According to RWE, the awarded seabed can possibly host nearly 3GW of capacity, which is expected to be operational by the end of 2030.

RWE Renewables offshore wind CEO Sven Utermöhlen said: “Winning a lease in the New York auction is a significant move for us as it marks RWE’s entry into the U.S. offshore wind market, one of our key strategic markets.”

Attentive Energy was the second highest bidder with $795m for an 84,332-acre area. It is a joint venture between EnBW and TotalEnergies.

Shell and EDF Renewables’ Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind Bight successfully bid $780m for a 79,351-acre area.

OW Ocean Winds East, a joint venture between EDP Renewables and ENGIE, had bid $765m to win the 71,522-acre OCS-A 0537 lease area.

Invenergy Wind Offshore secured an 83,976-acre area with a bid of $645m.

Mid Atlantic Offshore Wind, which is owned by Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP), secured rights to an area of 43,056 acres with a $285m bid.