Ørsted has signed an agreement with the port of Virginia in the USA to lease a portion of the Portsmouth Marine Terminal.

Ørsted could use the site for its work on the Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind (CVOW) project with Dominion Energy, as well as for staging materials and equipment for Ørsted projects up and down the East Coast. 

If fully executed, the lease will run through to 2026, during which time Ørsted plans to install nearly 3,000 MW of wind energy projects in the USA.

“This is a big step towards making Virginia a leader in wind energy and offshore wind manufacturing,” said the state’s governor Ralph Northam. “With the port of Virginia at its helm, the Hampton Roads region has the trained workforce and the nautical know-how to become a vital hub for offshore wind development.”

The agreement between the port and Ørsted is for an initial lease of 1.7 acres (0.7 ha) at the Portsmouth Marine Terminal, with options to expand to an additional 40 acres (16.2 ha). 

Headquartered in Denmark, Ørsted one of the leading developers of offshore wind energy. According to the energy company, it has installed one third of all offshore wind turbines globally. 

During the last ten years, Ørsted has transformed from a company with fossil fuels at the core of its business to one of the biggest renewable developers in the world. 

The group is now aiming to drive out carbon emissions from its energy generation and operations, with the goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2025. 

Henrik Poulsen, Ørsted ceo, said: “We have transformed from producing energy based on fossil fuels to producing carbon neutral energy. We have seen a real strengthening of our business and shown that a rapid green turnaround is possible. A decade ago, we were one of Europe's most coal-intensive utilities, and by 2025, we will be carbon neutral.” 

Ørsted is also aiming to tackle carbon emissions beyond its own walls. These emissions come from energy trading and the supply chain. The company has committed to reducing the emissions that take place outside of Ørsted, but are still linked to its activities, by 50 percent by 2032, compared to 2018. 

Ørsted now also sets a target to achieve carbon neutrality across the company's entire carbon footprint by 2040, ten years ahead of the global target for net-zero emissions.