U.S. DOE Establishing Center of Excellence to Accelerate Domestic Offshore Wind Industry

The U.S. Department of Energy  announced it is investing $4.75 million to establish a national center of excellence to accelerate reliable and equitable offshore wind energy deployment.The Academic Center for Reliability and Resilience of Offshore Wind, led by the University of Massachusetts Amherst with approximately 40 partners, will focus on workforce development, targeted research, and partnerships and strategies to embed equity in offshore wind development. 
U.S. DOE Establishing Center of Excellence to Accelerate Domestic Offshore Wind Industry
Image by David Will from Pixabay

“Offshore wind can play a major role in decarbonizing the U.S. electric grid, and meeting its potential will require skilled workers to propel us forward,” said Jeff Marootian, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.

“This consortium will provide timely and relevant training and education to help foster the domestic offshore wind workforce of tomorrow and secure a clean energy future for all Americans.”

The selected ARROW consortium, funded by DOE’s Wind Energy Technologies Office, will provide inter-disciplinary educational opportunities to help advance the next generation of offshore wind workers.

ARROW is made up of eight universities, three national laboratories, two state-level energy offices, and many industry and stakeholder groups. It is designed to foster and support a diverse, enduring offshore workforce that is domestically educated while ensuring reliable, resilient, equitable, low-cost, and rapid deployment of offshore wind energy. 

To accomplish these goals, ARROW will support three programs. 

  1. ARROW-Empower will focus on an enduring and comprehensive educational scale-up for offshore wind, advancing the education of 1,000 students over the initial 5-year life of the center. 
  2. ARROW-Innovate will conduct research on infrastructure, atmospheric and ocean conditions, and marine and human ecology to advance the resiliency of offshore wind.
  3. Arrow-Engage will connect with communities across the country and help ensure benefits from offshore wind are spread equitably, while also helping to grow a diverse domestic workforce. 

This consortium includes Clemson University, Morgan State University, Johns Hopkins University, Northeastern University, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, University of Massachusetts Lowell, University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez, Argonne National Laboratory, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, and the Maryland Energy Administration. Many other businesses and organizations are anticipated to serve as partners. 

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