On Thursday, Jan. 27, U.S. Sen. Majority Leader Charles Schumer secured a $25 million federal grant to facilitate offshore wind development at the South Brooklyn Marine Terminal 35th Street Pier Expansion Project.
The announcement was made at the terminal, along with U.S. Rep. Nydia Velazquez, Public Advocate Jumaane Williams and Elizabeth Yeampierre, executive director of UPROSE, a Sunset Park-based grassroots community-based organization working on climate change.
The funds were awarded through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration (MARAD) Port Infrastructure Development Grant program.
Schumer said he advocated for the funding several times, speaking with U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg.
Back in December 2020, Schumer joined other officials at the South Brooklyn Marine Terminal to call for a new hub to upgrade port infrastructure to support offshore wind development.
Soon afterward, in January 2021, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) approved the plan, which would be done by the energy firm Equinor. The wind turbines would be assembled at the Brooklyn waterfront facility, then installed at “wind farm” sites off the coast of Long Island.
“I am proud we secured this massive $25 million federal investment to help the South Brooklyn Marine Terminal reach new heights, boost the local economy, and blow a gust of new life into our fight against climate change,” said Schumer.
“This project is a true win-win-win that will create hundreds of good-paying union jobs, including for residents of this frontline Brooklyn community, boost New York’s clean-energy manufacturing sector, all while combating climate change in big, bold ways. Brooklyn has the wind at its back with this announcement, and the future looks very bright,” said the senator, a lifelong Brooklyn resident.
Upgrades to the port are expected to bring in 344 jobs and the offshore wind activity is estimated to create 3,274 full-time jobs.
The wind turbine assembly center would generate more than 1,500 megawatts of clean energy here in the city, positioning New York to play a significant role in the offshore wind supply chain that would create thousands of jobs across the state.
“Today, we were able to celebrate a huge victory for New York,” said Williams via Twitter. “A brand new green energy manufacturing hub is coming to Sunset Park — bringing jobs, cleaner air, and a just transition to this community. Thank you to all of our federal and local partners who joined us in this fight.”
Schumer added that the Sunset Park Terminal can position New York State to manufacture offshore wind technology while leading the way in clean energy deployment.
“This site is primed to be up and running quickly with investments like this one, providing New York a critical foothold in the offshore wind supply chain and its tremendous opportunities for new jobs,” he said.
“An honor to stand with @SenSchumer and environmental justice advocates to announce nearly $25 million in federal funding to advance the SBMT expansion project,” said Velazquez. “This victory for the community brings us one step closer to a sustainable working waterfront and jobs in Sunset Park.”