Governor O'Malley Joins Local Steelworkers to Promote Job Creating Potential of Offshore Wind

Proposed off shore wind farm would generate up to 4,000 construction, 800 permanent jobs


BALTIMORE, MD (October 7, 2010) – Governor O'Malley today joined members of the United Steelworkers, along with representatives from the clean energy, manufacturing, and non-profit sectors, to announce the tremendous potential that offshore wind development holds for new job creation in Maryland. A proposed one gigawatt wind farm in the waters off of the Delmarva coast could generate as many as 4,000 manufacturing and construction jobs during the five year development period, with an additional 800 permanent jobs once the turbines are spinning, while securing our energy future and producing sustainable energy solutions for consumers.

“Wind energy provides the unique opportunity to utilize jobs that exist and adapt them to a new, emerging industry that will secure our energy future and put hardworking moms and dads back to work,” said Governor O'Malley. “Maryland is well positioned to move forward and become a leader in this industry – an industry fueled by the cause of cleaner, greener energy – thanks to the tough choices we’ve made together over the last four years that have transformed Maryland into one of the leading clean energy states in the nation.”

With no current manufacturing and deployment infrastructure in place on the East Coast, early establishment of manufacturing and training facilities could have a major impact on regional employment. An analysis conducted at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory of the US Department of Energy estimates that offshore wind will create approximately 20.7 direct jobs per annual megawatt, including jobs in manufacturing, engineering, and skilled labor.

“I'm proud to stand here today with Governor O'Malley on behalf of the men and women of the United Steelworkers,” said James Strong, local District Director of the United Steelworkers. “Offshore wind presents a tremendous opportunity to secure and expand the steel industry in Maryland and throughout the region.”

Today's announcement represents the latest in a series of steps forward for Maryland's clean energy economy. Earlier this year, Governor O’Malley visited the GM transmission plant in White Marsh to announce that GM would produce next-generation, two-mode, rear wheel drive motors and related electric drive components at the Maryland plant, creating approximately 200 jobs and retaining hundreds more already at the plant.  Just last week, Governor O’Malley joined officials at the plant to announce an expansion of the facility, creating even more jobs. 

Governor O’Malley set a goal of creating at least 100,000 green jobs by 2015, and along with partners in organized labor, and in the private, academic, and non-profit sectors, the O’Malley-Brown Administration continues to implement twenty action items that are designed to create new jobs, advance eco-friendly technologies, and provide more Marylanders with the skills they need to participate and maximize the benefits of a green economy for their own families. 
Governor O’Malley’s Greener Jobs Initiative is centered around five core strategies:

  • Aggressively attract, expand, and retain green businesses.  
  • Work with our existing industries to assist them in adopting more sustainable practices – helping them grow while protecting the environment and create jobs.
  • Promote research, generation, and advancement of alternative energy in Maryland – which is helping create jobs in the present and laying the groundwork for future job creation as these technologies progress. 
  • Provide our existing workforce and future graduates with the requisite skills for green-collar jobs. 
  • Relentlessly measure performance to share information, track our progress, and when necessary adjust tactics and strategies in pursuit of our goals, to redeploy resources.

This summer, Governor O’Malley and Delaware Governor Jack Markell wrote to President Obama proposing a federal-state partnership for the development of a power purchase agreement for offshore wind energy.  The development of one gigawatt of wind energy in the mid-Atlantic region could lead to the creation of thousands of clean energy jobs.

Also this summer, Governor O’Malley formally entered Maryland into a formal partnership in the newly formed Atlantic Offshore Wind Consortium. The group, comprised of states along the Atlantic coastline and the United States Department of the Interior, will work to coordinate regionally prominent issues surrounding the development of off shore wind along the Atlantic outer continental shelf.

“Offshore wind has the potential to provide more renewable energy than any other resource in the region,” said Malcolm Woolf, Director of the Maryland Energy Administration. “In addition to creating or securing thousands of jobs, this proposed wind farm would represent a big step forward towards achieving Maryland's goal of generating 20% of our energy from clean, renewable resources by 2022.”

For more information, visit the Maryland Energy Administration.


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