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Governments of Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador Sign Memorandum of Understanding to Advance Offshore Wind Power and Good Jobs

January 24, 2024

Governments of Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador Sign Memorandum of Understanding to Advance Offshore Wind Power and Good Jobs

Energy systems across the world are rapidly transforming, and offshore wind development will create sustainable jobs and help power Canada’s economy. With the longest coastlines in the world, Canada is well positioned to become a global leader in the $1-trillion global offshore wind energy market, particularly in Atlantic Canada.

The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, and the Honourable Dr. Andrew Furey, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on offshore wind to enable Newfoundland and Labrador to take the regulatory lead on offshore wind projects within its inland bays to enable the development of offshore wind projects in Newfoundland that will power Newfoundland’s economy forward. They were joined by the Honourable Gudie Hutchings, Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency and Rural Economic Development, and the Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Minister responsible for Labour and Seniors.

The MOU establishes a clear process for Newfoundland and Labrador to administer land tenure and life-cycle regulation. Recognizing that the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador has ambitious growth plans and wants to move ahead quickly, this agreement will allow the province to dictate the speed and pace of development in the bays. With the predictable and efficient approach presented by the MOU, our governments are sending a direct signal to investors, workers and communities that Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador are collaborating to unlock offshore renewable energy development within provincial bays while affirming our shared commitment to joint management under the Atlantic Accord Acts as part of a thriving and sustainable offshore energy sector in the province.

 The MOU outlines the framework for Newfoundland and Labrador to administer land tenure and life-cycle regulation, including revenues for offshore renewable energy projects within provincial bays. The MOU announced today is made possible by Bill C-49, which establishes the legislative framework for offshore wind in the joint-management areas.

Land tenure and life-cycle regulation of existing offshore energy activity, as well as offshore renewable energy projects located beyond the bays, will be regulated by the Offshore Energy Regulator, according to the authorities set out under the Atlantic Accord Acts and as amended by Bill C-49. This approach builds on our long-standing commitment to collaboration with our joint management partners, including through Bill C-49 and the Regional Assessments for Offshore Wind Development in Newfoundland and Labrador and Nova Scotia.

Together, Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador are taking another important step forward to ensure a thriving offshore energy sector in Newfoundland and Labrador, while contributing to our shared goal of creating sustainable jobs, developing a net-zero electricity system by 2035 and developing a net-zero economy in 2050.

Quotes

“Newfoundland and Labrador is rich in renewable energy resources that make us well positioned to meet our net-zero targets, mitigate the impacts of climate change and grow clean energy jobs and economic development. Our government will continue to ensure Newfoundlanders and Labradorians are the principal beneficiaries of our valuable resources. This MOU recognizes waters within provincial bays and will expedite the development of renewable energy in our province.”

The Honourable Andrew Furey
Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador

“Newfoundland and Labrador have incredible offshore wind potential, and Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador are seizing this economic opportunity. Today’s agreement with the province furthers our ability to attract investments and create good-paying jobs in Newfoundland’s offshore by establishing a framework to enable the province to move ahead with its ambitious renewable energy development plans. Combined with significant federal investments in renewable energy and our work to strengthen the Accord Acts, we are furthering Canada’s commitment to build a strong and attractive renewable energy sector in Newfoundland and Labrador for decades to come.” 

The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson
Minister of Energy and Natural Resources 

“This MOU allows the province to continue to move forward with the development of renewable energy while providing clarity and certainty around the land that is jointly managed and that is within provincial bays.”

The Honourable Andrew Parsons
Minister of Industry, Energy and Technology
Government of Newfoundland and Labrador

“The world has taken notice of Newfoundland and Labrador’s incredible natural resources and our dedicated workforce. This agreement positions our province as a supplier of choice for the net-zero future and secures good jobs for workers across our province.”  

The Honourable Gudie Hutchings
Minister of Rural Economic Development
Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

“Newfoundlanders and Labradorians are the principal beneficiary of our resources in the Offshore oil and gas industry. We want to do the same for Offshore wind. This MOU and amendments to the Atlantic Accords will help our Province lead the world in offshore renewable energy.” 

The Honourable Seamus O’Regan,
Minister of Labour and Seniors

“This MOU between the governments of Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador marks an important step toward catalyzing an offshore wind industry in the province. With a Regional Assessment of offshore wind underway, green hydrogen facilities under development and now this MOU, Newfoundland is laying a strong foundation for a locally driven offshore wind sector. Marine Renewables Canada looks forward to working with both governments and its members throughout the offshore wind supply chain to advance this promising industry.”

Elisa Obermann
Executive Director, Marine Renewables Canada

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