Ørsted and NABTU launch U.S. workforce initiative

In: Windfarms
18/11/2020
Ørsted has launched initiative with North America’s Building Trades Unions (NABTU), a labor organization representing more than 3 million skilled craft professionals. The partnership aims to create a national agreement designed to transition U.S. union construction workers into the offshore wind industry in collaboration with the leadership of the 14 U.S. NABTU affiliates and the AFL-CIO.

As part of this national framework, Ørsted, along with its partners, will work together with the building trades’ unions to identify the skills necessary to accelerate an offshore wind construction workforce. The groups will match those needs against the available workforce, timelines, scopes of work, and certification requirements to fulfill Ørsted’s pipeline of projects down the East Coast, creating expansive job opportunities in a brand-new American industry for years to come and raising economics for a just transition in the renewable sector.

“Today’s agreement expands career pathways of opportunities for our members to flourish in this transition,” said Sean McGarvey, President of NABTU. “Our highly trained men and women professionals have the best craft skills in the world, and now will gain new experience in deep-water ocean work. Our agreement is based on a successful model developed by the Rhode Island Building Trades for the Block Island Wind Farm project. We commend Ørsted for coming to the table to work in partnership with us and our membership, and we also thank AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Liz Shuler for her help and support throughout the process.”

“Ørsted believes the best workers are always the best-trained workers, and we are proud to have earned a strong record of working with skilled union labor to build the country’s first offshore wind farm, the Block Island Wind Farm, where more than 300 union workers were employed,” said David Hardy, CEO of Ørsted Offshore North America. “We appreciate NABTU’s cooperation and the collaborative approach our union partners have brought to this endeavor and look forward to learning from and working with them on this groundbreaking partnership.”

Both Ørsted and NABTU, along with their affiliates and state and local councils, have agreed to work together on long-term strategic plans for the balanced and sustainable development of Ørsted’s offshore wind projects. This planning is expected to help ensure that site and state specific programming will be ready when federal permits are obtained, and construction begins.

Ørsted is one of the world's biggest operators of offshore wind farms and aims to have installed a total offshore wind capacity of 15 GW worldwide by 2025. In the U.S., Ørsted has been awarded the rights to build offshore wind farms to serve the markets of Maryland, New Jersey, Rhode Island, New York, and Connecticut. These wind farms will have a total capacity of approximately 2.9 GW, with commissioning to begin by 2024.


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