The Maryland Energy Administration has announced $1.2 million in grants to three businesses and training centers under the fiscal 2023 Maryland Offshore Wind Workforce Training Grant Program, including those at the Maritime Institute of Training and Graduate Studies, in Linthicum, and the University of Maryland College Park.
The program is designed to establish an offshore wind supply chain in Maryland by helping workforce training centers offset the capital expenditures and operating costs incurred when developing curriculum and conducting the associated training.
Maryland, along with other east coast states, has collectively committed to procuring nearly 40,000 megawatts of offshore wind capacity by 2040. A 2022 report by the Special Initiative for Offshore Wind at the University of Delaware estimates that developing 30,000 MW of offshore wind capacity by 2030 presents a total revenue opportunity exceeding $100 billion for businesses in the supply chain in the U.S. by 2030.
The Maryland Public Service Commission has approved 2,022.5 MW of offshore wind capacity through Maryland’s Round 1 and 2 Offshore Wind Renewable Energy Credit Program. These projects will power nearly 600,000 average Maryland homes and create more than 12,000 direct full-time equivalent jobs during the development and construction phase, and more than 3,000 direct FTE jobs during the 20-to-30 year operations and maintenance phase.
These projects will support Maryland’s growing offshore wind supply chain and result in at least $1.5 billion of in-state expenditures including at least $325 million for small, minority, woman, and veteran owned businesses.
In addition, project developers have committed to investments of $40 million for port infrastructure, $76 million for steel fabrication, $150 million for monopile foundation manufacturing, $140 million for subsea cable manufacturing and $100 million for turbine tower manufacturing.
The current awardees include the following three organizations. A fourth award recipient was in the pending approval phase at the time of this release.
MITAGS will expand the capabilities of its Masters, Mates and Pilots’ Maritime Advancement, Training, Education and Safety Program to include a virtual reality component to its simulation technology center. Through the center, MITAGS will offer training to mariners who will operate the offshore wind construction and crew transfer and support vessels.
University of Maryland College Park: $398,210
The UMCP will develop and implement a new graduate course, Offshore Wind Energy Fundamentals. The course will consist of five major topic areas related to offshore wind energy: Wind, Waves and Aeromechanics; Structures, Fabrication and Installation; Electrical Generation, Controls and Distribution; Environment, Finances and Levelized Cost of Energy; and Operations and Maintenance.
The development of the course will result in developing and implementing one or more Massive Open Online Courses based on the topics from the Offshore Wind Energy Fundamentals course that will be made available for free.
Arcon Training Center, Salisbury: $400,000
Arcon Training Center will expand its existing Global Wind Organization Basic Technical Training program. Through grant funding, Arcon intends to retain its BTT Trainer and offer full tuition coverage for up to 60 students during the two-year life of the grant, while conducting the maintenance of the specialized equipment needed for the BTT Mechanical, Electrical, and Hydraulics modules.