Three new proposed offshore wind projects would deliver decades of economic benefits to the people of Massachusetts, Wendy Northcross, CEO of the Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce, wrote in a recent op-ed in Cape Cod Today.
But as competition for offshore wind projects heats up along the east coast, the Commonwealth needs to act quickly to show its support, she added.
"Given the promise of [the proposed projects,] it is critical for Massachusetts to show its seriousness by supporting the nascent industry's growth, so it does not become overshadowed by development activity under way in New York and other states on the Eastern Seaboard," Northcross wrote.
The local chamber CEO also cited some of the benefits expected to come from the proposed projects, noting:
- A $15 million fund for development of supply chain, businesses, and infrastructure, and job-training programs for local workers through Vineyard Wind.
- Some $2.75 million in agreements with the Massachusetts Maritime Academy, Bristol Community College, New England Aquarium and other organizations through Bay State Wind's -- plus, more than $2 million in grants for research and programs to protect the region's fisheries.
- Commitments of $1 million to the Massachusetts Maritime Academy to support economically disadvantaged students and another $1 million to the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth through Deepwater Wind's Revolution Wind project.
"By ensuring robust competition and diversity in the offshore wind industry from the start," Northcross wrote, "the Commonwealth will pay decades worth of dividends into the state's economy long after the first turbines are spinning."
Read the op-ed by Northcross in Cape Cod Today.
Other MA local chamber CEOs in the news include:
- Rick Kidder, President and CEO of the SouthCoast Chamber of Commerce, who previously voiced his support for offshore in South Coast Today.
- Jeannie Hebert, President and CEO of the Blackstone Valley Chamber of Commerce, who last year called for an increased commitment to renewable energy in the Worcester Business Journal.