Greg Hembree, R-North Myrtle Beach, has prefiled a bill that would require the S.C. Public Service Commission to adopt regulations that encourage public utilities to invest in offshore wind and development activities.
The bill is the same as one Hembree introduced in the last legislative session that was blocked from a vote on the floor by Sen. Shane Martin, R-Spartanburg, Hembree said.
Hembree said that he hopes Martin will let the bill proceed to a vote this year, a move that could speed development of the offshore wind farms that North Myrtle Beach is hoping to benefit from.
North Myrtle Beach, among other things, has included conduits in its new ocean outfall pipes that would be channels where transmission lines from offshore facilities could come ashore, where the power would be incorporated into the grid.
Hembree said he and Martin talked at the end of last session and that “He promised to keep an open mind about (the proposal) and continue studying the bill.”
If adopted, the bill could result in regulations that would provide incentives and cost recovery for suppliers and distributors who invest in offshore wind research and development activities.
Sen. Larry Grooms, R-Berkeley, signed on to Hembree’s bill as co-sponsor. Rep. Alan Clemmons, R-Myrtle Beach, and Rep. Greg Duckworth, R-North Myrtle Beach, have pre-filed the bill in the House.