New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy has unveiled plans to develop the New Jersey Wind Port, a first-in-the-nation infrastructure investment that will provide a location for essential staging, assembly and manufacturing activities related to offshore wind projects on the East Coast.
The Wind Port has the potential to create up to 1,500 manufacturing, assembly and operations jobs, as well as hundreds of construction jobs in New Jersey. Manufacturing and marshaling projects supported by the Wind Port will drive economic growth in Salem County, in south Jersey and throughout the state. New Jersey is committed to using union labor to construct the Wind Port and intends to set a new standard for inclusion of minority and women workers and business owners. Construction is targeted to begin in 2021.
“Offshore wind is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to not only protect our environment but also greatly expand our state economy in a way that has immediate impacts and paves the way for long-term growth,” says Murphy.
“The New Jersey Wind Port will create thousands of high-quality jobs, bring millions of investment dollars to our state and establish New Jersey as the national capital of offshore wind. This is a vital step forward in achieving our goal of reaching 7,500 MW of offshore wind power by 2035 and 100% clean energy by 2050.”
Construction is planned in two phases. Phase 1 will develop a 30-acre site to accommodate marshaling activities and a 25-acre component manufacturing site. Phase 2 adds another 150 acres to accommodate expanded marshaling activities and extensive manufacturing facilities for turbine components such as blades and nacelles.
The state currently estimates the Wind Port will cost between $300 million and $400 million at full build. The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) is leading the development and is currently considering a range of public, private and public-private partnership (P3) financing options.
Offshore wind is a central component of the state’s plan to achieve 100% clean energy by 2050. As part of that plan, New Jersey has committed to producing 7,500 MW of offshore wind energy by 2035. Studies by the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU), the U.S. Department of Energy and offshore wind project developers have highlighted the need for new port facilities designed specifically to meet the offshore wind industry’s unique needs.
The offshore wind projects slated for development along the East Coast over the next decade are expected to require more than $100 billion of capital investment, creating an opportunity for significant economic growth. New Jersey’s location at the heart of the East Coast wind belt, commitment to supporting offshore wind and a diverse and highly skilled workforce put the state in a strong position to capitalize on this opportunity.
The New Jersey Wind Port will be located in Lower Alloways Creek Township, on an artificial island on the eastern shores of the Delaware River, southwest of Salem. The site was selected after a 22-month assessment process, including engagement with industry, government and environmental stakeholders. The site is more than five miles from the nearest New Jersey residential area, can be built to meet the offshore wind industry’s needs and has ample space to grow operations over time.
The NJEDA is leading development on behalf of the state and is working closely with the landowner, Public Service Enterprise Group (PSEG). The site is next to PSEG’s Hope Creek Nuclear Generation Station, and the company has partnered with the NJEDA to complete preparatory work to accelerate the project’s construction.
Most jobs at the port will not require four-year college degrees and workforce development efforts are being prepared to ensure these opportunities are accessible to Salem County residents. The recently announced WIND Institute will serve as a center for education, research, innovation and workforce training related to the development of offshore wind in New Jersey and the region.
To learn more about the New Jersey Wind Port, click here.
To read Murphy’s full economic plan, click here.