March 27, 2023
Leading Light Wind to Invest in Staten Island as Nation-Leading Offshore Wind Hub
Announces Partnership with CUNY College of Staten Island, Launch of Scholars Program, and Focus on Arthur Kill Terminal
New York, NY (March 27, 2023) – Today, Leading Light Wind, the only American-led offshore wind project in the New York Bight, announced its commitment to establish Staten Island as the center of the American offshore wind industry through three critical initiatives: a $900,000 partnership with CUNY College of Staten Island to develop the next generation of offshore wind workforce; an Offshore Wind Scholars Program to connect students across the region to career opportunities in the offshore wind industry; and a plan to conduct turbine pre-assembly and marshalling activities at the proposed Arthur Kill Terminal (AKT) facility in Richmond Valley, Staten Island.
First, Leading Light Wind and CUNY College of Staten Island announced a strategic partnership to advance offshore wind education and workforce development in Staten Island. Leading Light Wind will invest $900,000 to scale programs related to renewable energy and technology innovation and facilitate the incorporation of offshore wind education into existing programs at the CUNY College of Staten Island.
Second, the partnership announcement spotlights the launch of the Leading Light Wind Offshore Wind Scholars Program, which will sponsor college students from the area to attend renewable energy conferences and serve as the project’s program for engaging youth to foster the education and career pipelines our clean energy economy requires.
"CUNY College of Staten Island is delighted to partner with Leading Light Wind to train and educate students to join the growing offshore wind industry in New York City and State," said Dr. Timothy G. Lynch, Interim President, College of Staten Island. “This partnership represents an important opportunity for our students to benefit from hands-on experience, gain exposure at industry events, and hear directly from industry veterans. The launch of the Leading Light Wind Offshore Wind Scholars Program is transformative for all New York City college students, and we are excited to be the first school to partner with Leading Light Wind.”
The Leading Light Wind Offshore Wind Scholars Program will kick-off by sponsoring students from CUNY College of Staten Island to attend the International Offshore Wind Partnering Forum (IPF), the largest offshore wind conference in the U.S., that begins on March 28, 2023. The program will continue to bring unique opportunities and programming to students with an interest in learning about the clean energy transition and career pathways in the offshore wind industry.
"We have to start investing in STEM education and workforce training today to ensure that New Yorkers are ready for the coming offshore wind boom. That is why our partnership with the CUNY College of Staten Island is critical to train, educate, and equip capable New Yorkers with the skills necessary to enter the green jobs economy upon graduation," said Wes Jacobs, Project Director, Leading Light Wind. “We applaud the State and City’s leadership in directing resources to Staten Island to catalyze education and training in the offshore wind industry and are proud to bolster these efforts with our own partnership with CUNY CSI.”
Third, via its recently submitted bid in New York State’s third offshore wind solicitation for Offshore Wind Renewable Energy Certificates (NY3), Leading Light Wind outlined a plan to use AKT – a proposed state-of-the-art offshore wind facility, for its port and marshaling activities. Leading Light Wind included AKT across its Supply Chain Investment Plan proposals (SCIPs) and aims to revitalize the working waterfront and provide local job opportunities in Staten Island, if selected by NYSERDA.
The partnership with CUNY College of Staten Island is part of Leading Light Wind’s $300 million community benefits program. In addition to CUNY College of Staten Island, Leading Light Wind also entered into six community partnerships as part of the project's bid to New York to advance a holistic vision for the community and provide far reaching economic benefits. These partnerships include the Waterfront Alliance, CUNY Offshore Wind Advisory Network, Gotham Whale, the Children's Environmental Literacy Foundation, the Brooklyn Navy Yard, and the New York City Economic Development Corporation (the Waterfront Pathways Program and newly proposed Lift All Boats fund to support small businesses). Through these partnerships, Leading Light Wind aims to create a more sustainable and inclusive future for the Empire State.
A word from our supporters in Staten Island:
“Staten Island’s unique geography and human capital are unmatched in the region and that’s why I worked to secure federal funding that will make our borough a state-of-the-art infrastructure hub for offshore wind,” said Congresswoman Nicole Malliotakis. “Leading Light Wind’s partnership with CUNY College of Staten Island will ensure students across the region will have good-paying career opportunities in this emerging industry.”
"The collaboration between Leading Light Wind and CUNY College of Staten Island is exactly what we need to create more opportunities for local students to learn about the offshore wind industry and develop the skills needed for these jobs," said New York City Council Minority Leader Joseph Borelli. "It's exciting to see large-scale investments being made into our students and community to build a better, greener future."
“Representation matters, and we are thrilled Staten Island students will have the ability to interact with leaders in the burgeoning offshore wind field on campus and through the Leading Light Wind Offshore Wind Scholars Program,” said New York City Council Member Kamillah Hanks. “Coupled with real investments into our energy infrastructure at Arthur Kill Terminal, this is a once-in-a-generation opportunity for Staten Island to lead the national offshore wind conversation.”
"Arthur Kill Terminal will not only provide opportunities for local workers and supply chains to demonstrate the power of Staten Island business but will also help New York reach its ambitious renewable energy goals and continue to center Staten Island as a hub for the offshore wind industry in New York City," said Linda Baran, President & CEO, Staten Island Chamber of Commerce.
“The economic winds are changing for the better on Staten Island and I want to thank Leading Light Wind for their commitment to the next generation of workers here in our own backyard,” said Michael Cusick, President & CEO, Staten Island Economic Development Corporation. “This crucial partnership with CUNY College of Staten Island, coupled with the scholar program and pre-assembly and marshaling facility, will help facilitate our future and provide real, economic opportunities for residents and local businesses alike. Arthur Kill Terminal’s transformation into the epicenter of innovation and technology in the offshore wind sector has put Staten Island centerstage in our nation’s future of renewable energies.”
About Leading Light Wind
Leading Light Wind is an American-led offshore wind project that will bring locally sourced, renewable energy to the East Coast. Developed by Invenergy and New York-based energyRe, we believe in empowering the communities where we live and work. Leading Light Wind will build on our track record of impactful community engagement and innovation in sustainable American infrastructure to advance public health, create good-paying jobs, and support our local supply chain. Learn more at leadinglightwind.com.
About CUNY College of Staten Island
The College of Staten Island is a senior college of The City University of New York (CUNY) offering Doctoral programs, Advanced Certificate programs, and Master’s programs, as well as Bachelor’s and Associate’s degrees. As such, it is a truly comprehensive college, offering learning opportunities to a broad range of students.
Completed in 1994, the 204-acre landscaped Willowbrook campus of CSI, the largest in NYC, is fully accessible and contains an advanced, networked infrastructure to support technology-based teaching, learning, and research. Set in a park-like landscape where deer and other wildlife make their home, the campus is centrally located on Staten Island. Mature trees and woodlands, flowering trees and ornamental plantings, fields and outdoor athletic facilities, the great lawn, sculpture, and seating areas create a rural oasis in an urban setting.