The US Department of Energy (DoE) and Department of the Interior (DoI) have outlined a new offshore wind strategy that could help the country in deploying 86 gigawatts of offshore wind by 2050.

The strategy has been announced just weeks after the completion of construction on America’s first offshore commercial wind farm off of Block Island, Rhode Island.

The 30-MW wind farm is expected to start operating by the end of 2016 and will be capable of generating enough electricity to power 17,000 homes in New England.

The National Offshore Wind Strategy details the present state of offshore wind in the US, and actions required to reduce deployment costs and timelines in the offshore wind industry.

US Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell said: “This Administration has made significant investments in clean energy technologies, supporting a diversified energy portfolio to help meet our Climate Action Plan goal of permitting 20,000 MW of renewable electricity generation on public lands and waters by 2020.”

The strategy outlines 30 specific actions that DOE and DOI can take over the next five years to address key challenges facing the industry.

The actions will be implemented in three strategic areas such as reducing technical costs and risks; supporting effective stewardship; and improving the market conditions for investment in offshore wind energy.

It builds on DOE and DOI’s first joint offshore wind strategy published in 2011.

Since then, the Energy Department has allocated nearly $200m to support three cutting-edge offshore wind demonstration projects.

The DOE has found that developing 86,000 MW of the proposed offshore wind energy resources by 2050 would support 160,000 jobs.

The projects could also reduce power sector water consumption by 5% and cut greenhouse gas emissions by 1.8%.