Project Would Fund Retraining for Ravenswood’s UWUA Local 1-2 Workforce, Which Would Become Nation’s First Fossil Fuel Power Generation Staff to Transition to Operating Offshore Wind Equipment
Attentive Energy One Also Proposes New IBEW Training Center, Helping Union Workers Statewide Gain Skills Needed for the Construction of Offshore Wind Facilities
Today, Attentive Energy One (AE1), a joint venture between TotalEnergies and Rise Light & Power, announced a landmark agreement with Utility Workers Union of America Local 1-2 (UWUA Local 1-2), which represents the workforce at the Ravenswood Generating Station. In connection with the 1,400 MW offshore wind proposal, which AE1 submitted to the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) in January 2023, AE1 commits to supporting the just transition of Ravenswood’s union workforce in the shift to renewable energy at the facility.
AE1 aims to set a national unmatched model for advancing clean energy projects, which includes a community-focused renewable repowering of Ravenswood from New York City’s largest fossil fuel plant to a clean energy hub. The Agreement outlines a plan for preparing the members of Local 1-2 for the future in clean energy at Ravenswood, demonstrating the value of labor-management partnerships in stewarding a just transition for the existing energy workforce.
Upon award of a contract, AE1 will launch a program in coordination with UWUA Local 1-2 that will ensure its members are able to smoothly transition to work on new renewable energy equipment as well as an operations-and-maintenance hub supporting up to 3 GW of offshore wind, through retraining and other transition benefits. The Ravenswood Training Center, a NCCER-Accredited Training Sponsor and Assessment Center, provides an existing platform for introducing new curriculum related to renewable energy, maritime operations, and other relevant skills to UWUA Local 1-2 members.
Attentive Energy is committed to the goals in the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (Climate Act), which calls for a just transition to a clean energy economy that creates good paying jobs and fosters healthy communities.
“Attentive Energy One is the model for how to advance a transformational clean energy project that incorporates the community and embraces the principles of environmental justice and a just transition,” said Clint Plummer, Chief Executive Officer of Rise Light & Power, operators of the Ravenswood Generating Station and a partner in Attentive Energy One. “A just transition for our energy workforce tells them that they are valued and are the best candidates to operate the generation and transmission infrastructure necessary to power our sustainable future.”
“I applaud Attentive Energy One for establishing a historic model by being inclusive with labor and committing to a just transition,” said James Shillitto, President of UWUA Local 1-2, and a member of the Just Transition Task Force, a subcommittee of the New York State Climate Action Council. “As a prospective hub for offshore wind operations and interconnection, the union workforce at Ravenswood is poised to be the epicenter of the new green economy. By committing to a just transition, the union members of UWUA Local 1-2 who have been proudly running Ravenswood for decades are ready to put their valuable expertise to work in operating new renewable energy infrastructure for New York.”
“The unrivaled focus on just transition in the Attentive Energy One proposal is a collaborative effort from all parties involved to ensure that workers’ rights, livelihoods and community priorities are adequately addressed during the shift to renewable energy,” said Damian Bednarz, Managing Director, Attentive Energy.
In addition to stewarding a just transition at Ravenswood, AE1 will support training opportunities for workers statewide by partnering with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) and their industry partner the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) to open a Global Wind Organization (GWO) Training Center. This center will provide broad labor union training related to GWO-approved courses and educational credits through an agreement with Empire State College. All union tradespeople seeking the GWO safety certification will be welcome to use this facility, one of only five in the United States expected to offer the full-suite of GWO-certified safety courses, as well as recertifications. At full capacity, the IBEW GWO Training Center will issue more than 400 certifications each year, closing the skills gap for union workers to work in the offshore wind industry and supply chain in New York State.
IBEW Local 3 Business Manager Chris Erikson said of the collaboration: “This partnership demonstrates what is possible when organized labor and developers are committed to productive partnerships. Local 3 is proud to partner with Attentive Energy One in offering GWO training to all union members. We are leading the effort to prepare the next generation of men and women for jobs in offshore wind.”
Underscoring a state-wide approach to offering training opportunities that meet workers wherever they are, AE1 is also collaborating with the National Offshore Wind Training Center (“NOWTC”) – the result of a cooperative labor partnership between the Long Island Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO, the Building & Construction Trades Council of Nassau & Suffolk Counties, Suffolk Community College and others. NOWTC will offer GWO training on Long Island, giving access to critical safety training for union members in the region. AE1 committed to utilizing the NOWTC for a portion of its training offerings, opening opportunities for Long Islanders to access training for jobs in offshore wind.
John R. Durso, President of the Long Island Federation of Labor said, “The Long Island union movement is committed to ensuring members can access the training needed to prepare them for careers in offshore wind. We are proud of our partnership with the National Offshore Wind Training Center and excited that Attentive Energy One will utilize the National Offshore Wind Training Center for a portion of its workforce training needs. We are optimistic about the future of clean energy jobs for union families, and grateful to Attentive Energy One for its ongoing support.”
AE1 also partnered with the Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater New York to memorialize its commitment to productive labor relations with the building trades unions.
Elected leaders stand in support of advancing the national model of just transition and fossil repowering at Ravenswood.
“Queens is ready to serve as a national model for how we can tackle the existential climate crisis while ensuring no worker gets left behind,” said Senator Jessica Ramos, Chair of Committee on Labor. “Attentive Energy One will deliver clean electricity from offshore wind, and sharply reduce emissions from fossil fuels in New York City while preparing our neighbors to participate in the green economy. Let’s get it done.”
“Our families deserve to breathe clean air and our workers deserve to live with dignity as we work toward a greener, healthier future. To that end, this agreement between Attentive Energy One and Utility Workers Union of America Local 1-2 not only ensures the Ravenswood Generating Station transitions into a hub of renewable energy, but also becomes a model of how to empower the existing workforce amidst that transition,” said Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr. “Queens must become an international leader in renewable energy, and I’m confident this agreement will help The World’s Borough continue down that path.”
“I proudly stand in support of the transformative vision to retire fossil fuel infrastructure in Queens alongside the just transition of the union workforce at Ravenswood Generating Station. By delivering clean energy from the Attentive Energy One offshore wind project, this is a significant step towards reducing our carbon footprint and combating climate change, ensuring a cleaner and greener city for all,” said New York City Council Member James Gennaro, Chair of the Council Environmental Protection Committee. “Equally important, Attentive Energy One recognizes the vital role of the union workforce. Through comprehensive retraining programs, this project empowers skilled workers to transition into the renewable energy sector, safeguarding their livelihoods and fostering a just transition for all.”
About Attentive Energy One
Attentive Energy One (“AE1”) is an offshore wind project designed to help New York State achieve the twin goals of replacing fossil fuel with renewable energy and establishing a durable local industry with living-wage jobs. The project will deliver a historic environmental justice victory by retiring and replacing a major fossil-fuel power plant with offshore wind power. The project will power over 700,000 New York homes with clean energy produced from an offshore wind farm located in an area approximately 54 miles from its nearest point in New York. Wind power will be delivered directly to a waterfront power plant via a subsea transmission solution that avoids cable landings through beaches and other sensitive recreational areas. As a joint venture between TotalEnergies and Rise Light & Power, Attentive Energy One is uniquely positioned to deliver this major offshore wind project for New York. Click here for more information.
TotalEnergies is a global multi-energy company that produces and markets energies: oil and biofuels, natural gas and green gases, renewables and electricity. Our more than 100,000 employees are committed to energy that is ever more affordable, cleaner, more reliable and accessible to as many people as possible. Active in more than 130 countries, TotalEnergies puts sustainable development in all its dimensions at the heart of its projects and operations to contribute to the well-being of people. TotalEnergies has more than 11 GW of offshore wind projects in development, under construction or in operation across the world, and a portfolio of nearly 25 GW of wind, solar and storage in the U.S.
About Rise Light & Power
Rise Light & Power is a Queens, New York based energy asset manager and developer, and is actively transforming its core asset, Long Island City’s Ravenswood Generation Station, into a new clean energy hub, Renewable Ravenswood. By redeveloping New York City’s largest power generating facility, Rise will permanently replace fossil fuel power with homegrown renewable energy, while providing a just transition for its existing union workforce and economic opportunities for surrounding communities. Renewable Ravenswood, core to Rise’s growth-oriented strategy, is at the forefront of the ambitious clean energy transition taking place in New York State and will continue to provide reliable and cost-effective electricity for New York City for decades to come. Rise Light & Power is a wholly owned affiliate of LS Power. Click here for more information.