Albany residents offered training for offshore wind jobs

PHOTO PROVIDEDState and local officials pose Wednesday with students and graduates of the Multicraft Apprenticeship Preparation Program in Albany on Wednesday, Aug. 10, 2022. Offshore wind power developers donated $300,000 to support training for the new industry.
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State and local officials pose Wednesday with students and graduates of the Multicraft Apprenticeship Preparation Program in Albany on Wednesday, Aug. 10, 2022. Offshore wind power developers donated $300,000 to support training for the new industry.

ALBANY — The developers of a wind farm 30 miles off the shore of Long Island are providing $300,000 to train residents of Albany’s South End neighborhood to help build it.

Orsted and Eversource, partners on the 924-megawatt Sunrise Wind Project, announced the funding with local officials and potential trainees Wednesday at the Multi-Craft Apprenticeship Preparation Program training center in Albany.

It is drawn from the $1 million Upper Hudson Workforce Development Fund created by the Sunrise Wind project.

Sunrise is one of the first major offshore wind power projects in the United States, and one of the largest. An entire supply chain and support apparatus must be created for it. 

More than 150 miles from the area where Sunrise will stand, foundation components will be built in the Port of Coeymans and towers will be built in the Port of Albany.

Residents of the South End, which adjoins the Port of Albany, are targeted for the job training because it is a historically disadvantaged neighborhood, with lower income and greater exposure to air pollution.

“This is a long-awaited and exciting opportunity that will provide job training and sustainable unionized employment opportunities to low-income residents and people of color from Albany’s South End neighborhood,” Mayor Kathy Sheehan said.

The goal is to recruit workers of color and/or lower income to careers through which they may sustain a family, and to bring more diversity to the building trades in the process.

The new funding will cover pay, training  and emergency financial needs for 15 to 20 participants each in 2022 and 2023.

The structured worksite and classroom training is designed to equip participants to navigate a union apprenticeship program.

Offshore wind is part of New York State’s plan to reach a zero-emissions electric grid by 2040. The target is at least 9,000 megawatts of power generated by offshore wind turbines by the year 2035.

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