Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy is celebrating the first offshore wind turbine blade facility in the United States with a launch ceremony with government officials and wind industry partners in Virginia. Siemens Gamesa will develop more than 80 acres at the Portsmouth Marine Terminal in Portsmouth, Va., upon execution of a firm order for the 2.6 GW Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind Commercial Project with Dominion Energy.
Representing a cost of more than $200 million dollars, the facility would perform finishing of patented Siemens Gamesa Offshore IntegralBlades. Approximately 260 jobs at the facility are expected to be created when fully operational. Siemens Gamesa intends to create around 50 service jobs to provide operations and maintenance services for the Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind Commercial Project.
“We at Siemens Gamesa have shown the offshore wind industry the way for over 30 years,” states Marc Becker, CEO of the Siemens Gamesa Offshore Business Unit. “Our multimillion US-dollar investment has been energized by the strong collaboration with Dominion Energy and support of Virginia’s legislature and authorities.”
To enable the blade facility, Siemens Gamesa entered a land lease agreement with the Virginia Port Authority, supported by Virginia state incentives for site improvements. When operational, the facility is immediately intended to support deliveries to the Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind Commercial Project.
“Virginia is leading the way in offshore wind and using blades from this new facility in Hampton Roads on our Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind project is a major win for the region,” says Robert M. Blue, Dominion Energy’s chair, president and CEO. “It is great to see well-paying, clean energy jobs are on the horizon as an offshore wind supply chain develops here in Virginia.”
The Siemens Gamesa blade facility represents another step to develop the Portsmouth Marine Terminal into an offshore wind hub. Siemens Gamesa will look to potentially expand the facility if awarded future projects in the region.
“The Port of Virginia is proud to be able to help with the development of an entirely new industry that will spur job growth, drive our economy and create the U.S. East Coast’s offshore-wind logistics hub right here in Portsmouth,” comments Stephen A. Edwards, CEO and executive director of the Virginia Port Authority.
The Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind Commercial Project preferred supplier agreement remains subject to certain conditions including Dominion Energy’s final investment decision, governmental permitting, and other required approvals. The final number of SG 14-222 DD offshore wind turbines intended to be used likewise remains to be determined.
“Virginians want renewable energy, our employers want it, and Virginia is delivering it,” said Gov. Ralph S. Northam. “The Commonwealth is joining these leading companies to create the most important clean-energy partnership in the United States. This is good news for energy customers, the union workers who will bring this project to life, and our business partners. Make no mistake: Virginia is building a new industry in renewable energy, with more new jobs to follow, and that’s good news for our country.”