New Training Programme to Help Maryland Businesses Enter Offshore Wind

The Business Network for Offshore Wind and The Maryland Energy Administration (MEA) have launched the Foundation 2 Blade (FTB) programme for Maryland businesses to help them expand into offshore wind industry.

F2B’s training course is composed of six modules that explain the supply chain, spur innovation, and present a market entry path for companies. MEA provided a grant to ensure Maryland businesses can participate at a reduced cost.   

The programme will target companies in industries such as steel manufacturing, boating, transportation, aerospace, and engineering aiming to create the local supply chain for the offshore wind that can meet the growing demand and project pipeline along the US East, West, and Gulf Coasts.  

”Maryland is moving boldly into offshore wind development and that is already creating a new demand for local services and suppliers,” said Liz Burdock, president and CEO of the Business Network, a non-profit focused on developing offshore wind renewable energy in the US.

”The Foundation 2 Blade training program will help Maryland companies find out exactly how they fit and can diversify into the offshore wind supply chain. Building out a local supply chain is instrumental for the industry’s growth, but Maryland companies need to position themselves today to take advantage of this rare opportunity.”

The first Maryland F2B training programme will take place from 6 to 8 October in the Baltimore area. Since premiering the training in late 2020, the Business Network has delivered F2B trainings to over 60 local businesses across the country.

”Foundation 2 Blade (F2B) will bolster competitiveness by ensuring that Maryland regional companies are aware of opportunities in the offshore wind shore wind supply chain. Offshore wind has the potential to foster massive investment in Maryland and invigorate a number of community-supporting industries. MEA’s partnership with the Business Network helps leverage their deep understanding of the offshore wind business community,” said Dr. Mary Beth Tung Ph.D. Esq. Director of the MEA.

After authorizing renewable energy credits for 368 MW in 2017, the Maryland Public Service Commission is currently reviewing solicitation bids for up to 1,200 MW of offshore wind power generation.

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The two previously awarded projects, US Wind’s 270 MW MarWin project and Deepwater Wind’s (now part of Ørsted) 120MW Skipjack project are expected to create 4,977 local jobs, and the second solicitation round is expected to create thousands more, according to Business Network for Offshore Wind. 

Photo: Block Island Wind Farm; Photo source: CRMC (archive)