Leading Light Wind, a proposed offshore wind project in the New York Bight, has committed to establishing Staten Island in 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 marshaling activities at the proposed Arthur Kill Terminal facility in Richmond Valley, Staten Island.
First, Leading Light Wind and CUNY College of Staten Island have partnered 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.
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, an offshore wind conference that begins on March 28, 2023. The program will bring opportunities and programming to students with an interest in learning about the offshore wind 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,” says 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.”
Third, via its recently submitted bid in New York State’s third offshore wind solicitation for Offshore Wind Renewable Energy Certificates, Leading Light Wind outlined a plan to use AKT – a proposed offshore wind facility for its port and marshaling activities. Leading Light Wind included AKT across its supply chain investment plan proposals 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).