Lake Ontario Offshore Network to Encourage Offshore Wind Development (Canada)

A consortium of Lake Ontario based organizations has formed to encourage and facilitate the development of offshore wind power in Ontario. A number of large employers in the Hamilton, Niagara and Kingston areas have joined forces to create the Lake Ontario Offshore Network (LOON), a group of manufacturers and suppliers with unique qualifications and skills interested in developing offshore wind projects in Lake Ontario.

With more than 2,900 MW of offshore wind power proposed in the Great Lakes over the next five years, the Lake Ontario Offshore Network is preparing for the anticipated growth in offshore wind energy and encouraging Ontario’s government to do what it can to attract these jobs and investments to Ontario.

The group includes a number of large employers in marine services, coatings, concrete, steel, foundations, plates, and fabrication.

“The Lake Ontario Offshore Network is being established to convey the importance of moving forward now. Ontario cannot afford to lose these jobs and investments to our neighbours to the south,” stated Ian Baines, President of Windstream Wolfe Island Shoals, a developer and member of LOON who won the only offshore Feed in Tariff contract in Ontario. “We have decided to work together to encourage the provincial government to remove the roadblocks necessary to allow a pilot offshore project to proceed through the study and development process so that Ontario becomes a hub of expertise in North America,” continued Mr. Baines.

¬†“Kingston is home to a wide range of companies that would supply offshore wind power projects in Ontario,” stated Jeff Bradfield, President of the Anchor Concrete Products Ltd. “We encourage the government to do what it can to make Ontario a hub for this expertise, so that Kingston and other Lake Ontario communities can be home to the job creation and investment that offshore will inevitably bring,” he continued.

The companies in the Hamilton and Niagara areas are well-equipped to meet the challenges of offshore development in Lake Ontario, and have the skilled workforce to make it happen. Offshore wind projects will lead to much needed investment and job creation in these communities”, stated Paulo Pessoa, VP Business Development, Projects, of McKeil Marine Ltd.


Source: newswire, November 15, 2011