(Reuters) - Apollo Global Management Inc APO.N said on Friday that it agreed to invest $265 million in offshore wind developer US Wind Inc, marking the private equity firm's first foray into one of the hottest areas of renewable energy development in the country.
Apollo said its investment, which includes both debt and equity, will fund the construction of an offshore wind project off the coast of Maryland.
Wind power is the largest source of renewable energy in the United States, generating about 7.3% of the nation’s electricity supply, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
The majority of U.S. wind energy is currently generated onshore. But most new wind power projects are being sited offshore owing to limited availability of leased land and growing conflicts with local communities and land owners.
Apollo said US Wind holds a lease on about 80,000 acres located 10 to 30 miles off the coast of Maryland, which can contain 1.3 gigawatt of installed wind power generation capacity.
US Wind aims to construct a 270-megawatt wind power plant in the first phase of the project, which will supply electricity to75,000 Maryland homes when it launches in early 2024.
“US Wind is a premier developer at the forefront of an offshore wind energy industry that is rapidly expanding in both the US and abroad, as interests coalesce around clean energy,” Geoffrey Strong, co-head of infrastructure and natural resources at Apollo, said in a statement.
Apollo’s investment in US Wind was made out of the buyout firm’s second infrastructure fund, Apollo Infrastructure Opportunities Fund II, which is seeking to raise $3.5 billion from investors, according to regulatory filings.
Reporting by Chibuike Oguh in New York
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