In New Bedford, we know how to handle onshore operations, weld, perform as electricians, operate heavy equipment, and captain vessels. Our businesses understand the intricacies of a working waterfront and are well positioned to service industrial offshore wind. To meet the specific training and safety needs of the offshore wind industry, we have a network of strong community organizations, community colleges, vocational schools, and workforce training platforms already in place and ready to prepare the workforce for new opportunities.
Our lead partner in this effort is Bristol Community College (BCC). BCC is conducting a customized research study of the workforce requirements and economic development impacts associated with the development of 1,600 megawatts of electricity from offshore wind turbines proposed for construction in the MAWEA and RIWA. This customized workforce analysis integrates lessons learned from the respective European wind development experiences.
The research also includes a comprehensive assessment of existing safety regulations (EU/ISO/Industry) currently impacting European operations and the alignment of those safety regulations with existing and projected U.S. safety requirements. The research will generate a detailed assessment of the jurisdictional issues pertaining to federal oversight and enforcement of offshore wind safety requirements (OSHA/BOEM/DOE) of offshore wind deployment in the United States. The research will also utilize Jobs and Economic Development Impact (JEDI) model to estimate jobs and other gross economic impacts in each region.
This research study focuses specifically on the three BOEM leaseholders targeting and defining their respective workforce requirements. BCC is also determining the most effective pathways to aligning training with Global Wind Organization and American Wind Energy Association standards. Partners in this effort include the Humber Marine Alliance, Catapult Offshore Renewable Energy, Renewable UK and the Danish Wind Energy Association.
The University of Massachusetts is the national leader in academic research into wind power and service to government and industry through the work of its Wind Energy Center which was established as the Renewable Energy Research Laboratory on the Amherst campus in 1972.
Since 2013, BCC has offered a core wind technician curriculum of 32 credits. This certificate program provides a wide range of courses and instruction in wind turbine technology, turbine placement and construction, turbine operations and maintenance, monitoring and communications technology, tower safety, mechanical systems, electrical theory, power generation and distribution, hydraulics, and digital electronics.
BCC provides classroom based instruction, linked with practical on-site training, to provide a wide range of industry accreditation that are recognized and required by the majority of the major turbine manufacturers and maritime companies. Specialized training areas include maritime survival, safety and security. Operation and maintenance courses including time requirements, tools and materials, transportation, and safety topics.
Future programs focused on Operations and Maintenance (O&M) training will be developed with industry partners and will introduce students to systems for tracking component failure rates, reliability analysis metrics such as meantime between failures, meantime to repair, availability impacts and spare parts consumption. Additional O&M programs are also envisioned to include training for inspection, monitoring, tracking of durability or degradation of materials and components, onsite repair of critical components assessment of candidate components, repair capabilities, and best practices for repair techniques.
Massachusetts Maritime Academy is a fully accredited, four year, co-educational state university offering Bachelor and Master of Science degrees that are highly regarded in the worldwide maritime industry and beyond.
1213 Purchase Street
New Bedford, MA 02740