Electric utility, the Block Island Power Company (BIPC) claims to have successfully transferred Block Island’s electrical system to the offshore wind farm developed by Deepwater Wind in the Atlantic Ocean.

A Sea2Shore submarine cable transmits the electricity generated by the 30MW Block Island Wind Farm to the National Grid which is later distributed to the residents of Rhode Island.

Touted to be America’s first ever offshore wind farm, the Block Island Wind Farm has taken over from the diesel-powered generators used by BIPC in generating electric power for the island. The move from BIPC is expected to save approximately one million gallons of diesel fuel every year.

Deepwater Wind CEO Jeffrey Grybowski said: “It’s only fitting that Block Island has made history as the first town in the United States to be powered by offshore wind.

“It’s our honor to celebrate this historic milestone with Block Islanders. We’re confident that the example Block Island has set will inspire communities up and down the Eastern Seaboard to chart their own path toward a renewable future.”

BIPC’s transformation of the electric system gives relief to its customers whose concerns reached peak levels in 2008 owing to the rise of electrical costs to more than 60 cents per Kwh which was driven by the high cost of diesel for the generators.

The electric utility says that its customers in Block Island will straightaway find relief in their electric bills due to the power generation from the offshore wind farm.

Block Island Power interim president Jeffery Wright said: “Wholesale energy prices are at historic lows right now and to have the opportunity to secure some long-term contracts for our customers provides price stability and allows customers to budget month to month, rather than have their electric bills tied to volatile diesel fuel prices.

“Our power contract, that went into effect today, will take us into the fall of 2018. Between now and then we will monitor the regional energy markets and seek out even better opportunities that will provide our customers with predictable electric rates.”

BIPC provides power to around 2,000 customers. It has been providing locally generated power since 1925 to the Island.

Image: Block Island Wind Farm in the Atlantic Ocean, US. Photo: courtesy of Deepwater Wind.