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Construction starts on Brooklyn wind turbine factory set to be largest in nation

In World
June 11, 2024

New York City politicians broke ground Monday on a new wind turbine factory in Brooklyn that will become the largest of its kind in the U.S. once it’s completed over two years from now.

The project, known as the Sustainable South Brooklyn Marine Terminal, is located on the Sunset Park waterfront and will be a partnership between the city’s Economic Development Corporation and Equinor, a Norwegian energy company that primarily works in the emissions-causing fossil fuel sector. Once construction’s done in late 2026, it will be a staging, repair and maintenance hub for the 54 wind turbines that are expected to make up Empire Wind 1, an offshore green energy farm that will be located off of the south shore of Long Island.

In a press conference at the factory location, Mayor Adams, joined by state, city and congressional lawmakers, touted the project as a boon not just to renewable energy production but also to the local economy.

“We are powering up New York’s clean energy economy and creating more than 1,000 union jobs for working-class New Yorkers as we break ground on the largest dedicated offshore wind port in the nation,” Adams said before he and other politicians on hand grabbed shovels and threw dirt in the air to mark the official beginning of construction on the 73-acre facility.

Empire Wind 1, staged about 15 miles south of Jones Beach, was initially supposed to be operational in late 2024, but the start date got pushed back to 2027 due to construction complications.

Once up and running, the sprawling wind farm will deliver 810 megawatts of renewable energy to New York, enough to power 500,000 homes. Its construction is part of the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, a 2019 law requiring New York to achieve a number of benchmarks for renewable energy production by certain dates, including producing 9,000 megawatts of offshore wind by 2035.

The wind farm will also result in a slight energy cost spike for New Yorkers, lawmakers acknowledged.

“It will initially go up a few pennies, it is not going to be significant,” Manhattan Rep. Dan Goldman, a Democrat who represents the area, said. “But what is important about this as the first one that will actually bring energy to the New York City grid is that like with all new technologies, we learn a lot from it, we learn from the process and invariably the process becomes cheap.”

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