Brooklyn, NY– Equinor and bp, together with the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC), have awarded eight New York area organizations a total of $5 million in grants to provide local economic benefits that support sustainable growth, workforce development, empowerment of underserved communities, and climate justice in New York’s emerging offshore wind industry ecosystem.
The new Offshore Wind Ecosystem Fund recognizes leading organizations working to create systemic change toward an equitable energy transition. Applicants were chosen by a selection committee, comprised of representatives of the Sunset Park Task Force (SPTF), which advocates to maximize the economic potential and community links between Sunset Park residents and the waterfront, NYCEDC and Equinor. Recipients reflect stakeholders and geographies of critical need.
The eight organizations and related programs chosen to be implemented are as follows:
- City Growers at Brooklyn Grange Farm – The Ecosystem Fund grant will enhance the programming of City Growers’ Green Ambassadors program and Sunday Open Houses and Family Farm Days, which provide environmental education for urban youth.
- Educational and Cultural Trust Fund of the Electrical Industry – A comprehensive program will be implemented with Ecosystem Fund support to recruit, educate, and train a diverse future workforce for New York’s offshore wind industry.
- Jewish Community Center of Staten Island – The grant will support the JCC program “Creating Career Pathways in Offshore Wind,” open to all Staten Island residents and educating at least 3,000 children in grades K-12 and over 1,500 adults about wind energy.
- New York Academy of Sciences – The grant will support a variety of programming, including experiential learning of the offshore wind industry for public school students and providing support to residents of historically marginalized neighborhoods to enter and grow careers in the offshore wind industry.
- New York City District Council of Carpenters Apprenticeship Journeyman Retraining Educational & Industry Fund Funding will be used to support advanced training for skilled workers and apprentice recruitment from environmental justice communities who will join the pipeline for new jobs created by the offshore wind industry.
- Research Foundation of the City University of New York – The grant will support the City University of New York Offshore Wind Advisory Network’s Bridge to Offshore Wind, which will offer an interactive instructional seminar for people interested in learning about the region’s offshore wind industry. Focus will be on the maritime, electrical, construction and manufacturing, assembly, and supply chain subsectors.
- Southwest Brooklyn Industrial Development Corporation (SBIDC) – Funding will support SBIDC’s Wind Connections initiative to advance an inclusive and diverse local supply chain for the offshore wind industry in New York while increasing awareness of and access to these opportunities among disadvantaged business enterprises.
- Uprose – The grant will support Uprose’s Just Transition Worker Resource Initiative to connect members from historically marginalized waterfront communities in New York City to employment opportunities in the emerging green energy economy.
Selection criteria for Ecosystem Fund grants focused on three key priorities: (1) developing career pathways in the offshore wind ecosystem through job education and training; (2) support to directly impacted New Yorkers from historically marginalized and environmental justice areas by prioritizing access to workforce and business opportunities; and (3) advancing inclusive growth of the supply chain ecosystem by supporting local Minority-, Women- and Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Businesses (M/WBE and SDVOB) and Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBE).
“I congratulate all the grant recipients of the Offshore Wind Ecosystem Fund. This initiative helps recognize the incredible talent across New York by empowering underserved communities and supporting meaningful change and lasting opportunities in the city’s growing offshore wind ecosystem,” said Molly Morris, President, Equinor Renewables Americas.
“We are proud to support these grant recipients, each of which can help ensure New York’s energy transition is equitable and inclusive,” said Joshua Weinstein, bp’s President of Offshore Wind Americas. “This fund unlocks key investments in the people and communities that have been historically marginalized, and it ensures more New Yorkers can benefit from opportunities in the growing American offshore wind industry.”
Doreen M. Harris, President and CEO, NYSERDA said, “Clean energy is, and should continue to be, an investment in our communities – especially those historically underserved. NYSERDA is proud to see Equinor and bp committing to community benefits by investing in climate equity, workforce development and environmental education through the Offshore Wind Ecosystem Fund.”
“Initiatives like the Offshore Wind Ecosystem Fund help ensure that New York City leads with equity and innovation while establishing itself as a national hub for offshore wind,” said New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) President & CEO Andrew Kimball. “NYCEDC congratulates the grant recipients who will provide crucial support for traditionally underrepresented communities and ensure that economic opportunity is equitable and inclusive for New Yorkers.”
The Ecosystem Fund is designed to provide historically marginalized areas and communities in New York City with opportunities to benefit from the early stages of the offshore wind industry.
One of the largest wind developers in the world, Equinor is leading the Ecosystem Fund initiative on behalf of its 50-50 joint venture with bp. Together, the companies are developing the Empire Wind and Beacon Wind project, which, once completed, will provide enough renewable energy to potentially power nearly two million New York homes. In addition to the Offshore Wind Ecosystem Fund, Equinor and bp have invested millions towards an equitable energy transition for New Yorkers through the Offshore Wind Innovation Hub and forthcoming Learning Center, all located in Sunset Park. The area is home to South Brooklyn Marine Terminal, the future hub of the offshore wind energy in New York.
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About Empire Wind and Beacon Wind
Empire Wind and Beacon Wind are being developed through a 50-50 joint venture between Equinor and bp. Empire Wind is located 15-30 miles southeast of Long Island and spans 80,000 acres, with water depths of between approximately 75 and 135 feet. The lease was acquired in 2017. The project’s two phases, Empire Wind 1 and 2, once complete, will have a potential total installed capacity of more than 2 GW (816 + 1,260 MW).
Beacon Wind is located more than 60 miles east of Montauk Point and 20 miles south of Nantucket and covers 128,000 acres. The lease was acquired in 2019 and has the potential to be developed with a total capacity of more than 2 GW. This first phase, Beacon Wind 1, is currently under development; once complete it will have a potential installed capacity of 1,230 MW.
About Equinor Renewables Americas
Equinor is one of the largest offshore wind developers in the world. Its work in the United States includes operating two lease areas off New York, Empire Wind and Beacon Wind. The projects plan to provide New York State with 3.3 gigawatts (GWs) of energy—enough to power nearly two million homes—including more than 2 GWs from Empire Wind and 1,230 megawatts from Beacon Wind 1. Equinor has been awarded a lease on the Outer Continental Shelf off California. The United States is an attractive growth market for Equinor, with an ambition to install 12-16 GW of renewables capacity globally by 2030. www.equinor.com/NY
bp’s ambition is to become a net zero company by 2050 or sooner, and to help the world get to net zero. bp has a larger economic footprint in the United States than anywhere else in the world, investing more than $140 billion since 2005 and supporting about 245,000 jobs. For more information on bp in the US, visit www.bp.com/us.
About New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC)
New York City Economic Development Corporation is a mission-driven, nonprofit organization that works for a vibrant, inclusive, and globally competitive economy for all New Yorkers. We take a comprehensive approach, through four main strategies: strengthen confidence in NYC as a great place to do business; grow innovative sectors with a focus on equity, build neighborhoods as places to live, learn, work, and play; and deliver sustainable infrastructure for communities and the city’s future economy. To learn more about what we do, visit us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.
The Sunset Park Task Force’s mission is to maximize the potential of the Sunset Park waterfront district. The group brings together partners and community stakeholders, including business owners, elected officials, and neighborhood residents, throughout the year to further this mission, which includes efforts to advocate for local businesses and the working waterfront, promote transit and transportation, plan for future investments, and more for the area and surrounding community.