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Leading Light Wind would supply New York with up to 2,100 MW of clean energy—enough to power up to 800,000 homes annually

Proposal represents up to $13.3 billion in economic benefits for New York, including critical offshore wind infrastructure and supply chain investments

Leading Light Wind announces labor Memorandum of Understanding, Community Benefits Program, to accelerate a just energy transition across the Empire State

NEW YORK, Jan. 26, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Today, Leading Light Wind, the only American-led offshore wind development in the New York Bight, submitted its bid for an offshore wind power contract to the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). New York’s third competitive offshore wind solicitation includes a nation-leading $500 million investment in offshore wind ports, manufacturing, and supply chain infrastructure. Leading Light Wind proposes delivering up to 2,100 megawatts (MW) of clean energy to the state—advancing public health, climate action, environmental justice, and economic and workforce development across New York.

Leading Light Wind

Leading Light Wind is a bold vision for New York that will deliver enough clean, reliable energy to power the equivalent of up to 800,000 New York homes every year and offset nearly 2 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions in its first year of operation. The proposed project will support tens of thousands of family-sustaining jobs over its operational life and represents up to $13.3 billion in economic benefits for New York, including critical offshore wind infrastructure and supply chain investments. These benefits and investments will be an essential part of New York State reaching its nation-leading climate and energy goals outlined in the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. Leading Light Wind is a partnership between lead developer Invenergy and New York-based co-developer energyRe.

“Leading Light Wind is charting a course for New York’s clean energy future, one that is led by American innovation,” said Michael Polsky, Founder and CEO at Invenergy. “As the only American-led offshore wind project in the New York Bight, Leading Light Wind has an unmatched commitment to advancing a domestic offshore wind industry that secures American competitiveness in the global market, delivers a just energy transition, and builds new opportunities for New Yorkers.”

“Leading Light Wind is ready to bring our decades of expertise and experience to the fight for a resilient future,” said Miguel Prado, CEO of energyRe. “Offshore wind is critical to reaching New York’s bold climate and clean energy goals and can accelerate a family-sustaining green economy across the state. Leading Light Wind is uniquely positioned to realize New York’s domestic leadership in offshore wind—and deliver on the promise of cleaner air and a healthier future for our communities.”

“We are pleased to offer a unique and differentiated supply chain investment plan that will deliver economic benefits from Western New York to the Capital Region to New York City,” said Joshua Weinstein, Vice President and Head of Offshore Development for Invenergy. “We’re creating next-generation jobs through an innovation and operations base at the historic Brooklyn Navy Yard and marshaling port development at the Arthur Kill Terminal on Staten Island. In addition, we’re offering an energy storage solution to provide grid resilience and align our project with New York’s energy storage goals.”

Notably, Leading Light Wind signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with North America’s Building Trades Unions (NABTU) to ensure the project is built by New York union construction workers. The MOU covers all aspects of construction – from supply chain and port construction to offshore construction. The MOU and the team’s experience building renewable power projects ensures that Leading Light Wind is best positioned to create an American-led offshore wind union workforce. 

In addition to the supply chain investments, Leading Light Wind is focused on an equitable offshore wind industry in New York and will establish a community benefits program with up to $300 million in funding for driving stakeholder-directed community empowerment, building of an inclusive workforce, accelerating the offshore wind supply chain, and pioneering innovative and collaborative environmental research. Initial partnerships with community-based organizations and institutions include the Waterfront Alliance, the Albert C. Wiltshire Employment Center at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, CUNY Offshore Wind Advisory Network, CUNY College of Staten Island, Gotham Whale, the Children’s Environmental Literacy Foundation, and the New York City Economic Development Corporation (the Waterfront Pathways Program and newly proposed Lift All Boats fund to support small businesses).

Leading Light Wind also recognizes that meaningful stakeholder engagement is central to every area of NYSERDA’s offshore wind program. As a committed industry partner, Leading Light Wind will build upon NYSERDA’s efforts and center multifaceted stakeholder engagement throughout every stage of the project. Leading Light Wind is engaging with critical marine and fisheries stakeholders to ensure a burgeoning offshore wind industry can thrive alongside existing marine economies and resources.

Leading Light Wind builds upon Invenergy and energyRe’s partnership in New York, including the development of Clean Path New York – a landmark clean energy infrastructure project combining a new 175-mile state-of-the-art 1,300 MW HVDC underground transmission line with more than 3,800 MW of new wind and solar power in New York.

A word from our partners:

“Responsible offshore wind development can address environmental justice and protections thoughtfully and intentionally as our region commits to the transition to clean energy. Waterfront Alliance’s partnership with Leading Light Wind will enable us to move into the next phase of community visioning to refurbish a waterfront parcel in Staten Island. The transformation of this site into a safe, accessible open space furthers the 2021 New York City Comprehensive Waterfront Plan and promotes a more sustainable, city-wide relationship with our harbor,” said Cortney Koenig Worrall, President and CEO, Waterfront Alliance. “The project has also committed to designing port facilities to adhere to Waterfront Alliance’s rigorous WEDG standards for coastal design. This commitment ensures that Waterfront Alliance can verify the resilience, ecological, and public access benefits in communities where waterfront operations take place. We are especially excited about Leading Light Wind’s proposed revitalization of Dry Dock 4 at the Brooklyn Navy Yard for maritime uses to service the offshore wind industry.”

“This transformative investment in Dry Dock 4 at the Brooklyn Navy Yard would result in new industrial facilities and maritime infrastructure to service our city’s growing offshore wind sector,” said Lindsay Greene, President and CEO, Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corporation. “By leveraging the Navy Yard’s culture of innovation, and its proven track record of economic development, this project will help realize economic growth for innovative companies and diverse entrepreneurs both at the Yard and citywide. Moreover, Leading Light Wind’s commitment to partnering with the Albert C. Wiltshire Employment Center at the Brooklyn Navy Yard on offshore wind industry recruitment, administration, skills development and trainings, and wrap-around services means this project would bring good, high-paying jobs to our surrounding communities. Boosting local employment opportunities, while also advancing the development of clean energy, is critical to creating a more equitable, sustainable city for all.”

“The CUNY Offshore Wind Advisory Network, comprised of Kingsborough Community College, LaGuardia Community College, New York City College of Technology, and the College of Staten Island, are excited to work with best-in-class offshore wind industry partners such as Leading Light Wind,” said Christine Zagari-LoPorto, Associate Dean, Workforce Development and Continuing Education at Kingsborough Community College. “Leading Light Wind’s support of our Bridges to Offshore Wind Program will help ensure that the diverse student body at CUNY is able to not only learn about the exciting, well-paying career opportunities in the nascent offshore wind industry, but also obtain the training and skill development necessary to access jobs in this critical sector.”

CUNY College of Staten Island has been a mainstay of this community for over 60 years. We have a diverse, vibrant community that has a distinct opportunity to make a difference to advance the clean energy transition. The partnership with Leading Light Wind will help CUNY College of Staten Island scale our renewable energy and technology innovation programs, as well as incorporate offshore wind education into existing programs. We are building the future of the energy infrastructure, technology, and offshore wind workforce – essential investments for the entire state,” said Michael E. Steiper, Provost, College of Staten Island, CUNY

Gotham Whale is a source of education, advocacy, and science dedicated to improving the health of New York’s marine environment – so we are thrilled to be named a Leading Light Wind community partner because they have thoughtfully and meticulously shown their commitment to including marine stakeholders in their project,” said Paul L. Sieswerda, Director, Gotham Whale. “This partnership allows Gotham Whale to increase our funding of ongoing marine mammal data collection, citizen science efforts, and youth education programs. The Leading Light Wind team has the expertise necessary to ensure an environmentally responsible project that fosters collaboration and the continued success of all ocean users.”

“The Children’s Environmental Literacy Foundation is working to establish sustainability as an integral part of every child’s K-12 learning experience. A key part of building a sustainable future is helping today’s youth understand what that looks like and how they can be part of it,” said Tara Stafford Ocansey, Executive Director, Children’s Environmental Literacy Foundation. “Partnering with Leading Light Wind will allow us to bring experiential environmental programming, teacher trainings, and internship opportunities to local Title 1 middle and high schools. This critical work builds upon NYSERDA’s existing Offshore Wind Youth Action program, showcasing how climate change and environmental justice issues need to be centered in our sustainability education.”

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 Invenergy

Invenergy drives innovation in energy. Invenergy and its affiliated companies develop, own, and operate large-scale renewable and other clean energy generation and storage facilities in the Americas, Europe, and Asia. Invenergy’s home office is located in Chicago, and it has regional development offices in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Spain, Japan, Poland, and Scotland.

Invenergy and its affiliated companies have successfully developed more than 30,000 megawatts of projects that are in operation, construction, or contracted, including wind, solar, transmission infrastructure and natural gas power generation and advanced energy storage projects. Learn about Invenergy at Invenergy.com.

About energyRE

energyRe, LLC is a leading independent clean energy company focused on solving complex challenges and providing clean energy solutions in utility-scale offshore and onshore wind and solar generation, energy storage, transmission, and distributed generation. energyRe’s founding investors include principals of Related Companies, one of the nation’s most prominent privately-owned real estate firms and one of the country’s largest creators and preservationists of affordable housing. energyRe is led by an experienced executive management team and is guided by the values of community engagement, government partnership, and a demonstrated commitment to sustainability. energyRe has offices in New York, Houston, Indianapolis, and Charleston. For more information about energyRe, visit www.energyre.com. 

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