Jeff Grybowski has the right attitude when it comes to green development. He is the CEO of Deepwater Wind, which will live on in history as the first company to construct an offshore wind farm in the USA.
Deepwater Wind built the nation’s first offshore wind farm off the coast of Rhode Island, and Mr. Grybowski is gearing up for another build-out. Their next project will be the 90-MW Deepwater ONE South Fork wind farm which was recently given the green light by the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA).
Deepwater Wind will build the Deepwater ONE South Fork project on a lease of about 250 square miles. The site is about 15 miles east of Block Island, and Mr. Grybowski thinks that this zone could one day produce as much as 1500 MW of wind power .
But that isn’t what is great about Mr. Grybowski, or Deepwater Wind. What makes this man a force of nature is his attitude toward creating a new industry for developing offshore wind generation in the United States.
“It’s a tremendous advantage that we have a big robust offshore construction supply chain in the United States,” Mr. Grybowski said, “It just happens to not be building offshore wind right now; it’s building offshore oil and gas.”
Deepwater Wind isn’t worried about finding what they need for their next project. Their head of construction is a veteran in offshore development, and is a convert from the oil and gas sector.
Chris Van Beek has what it takes to get the job done offshore, and the overlapping skills from the petroleum industry are numerous. In addition to his valuable experience, he brings with him a depth of industry knowledge and connections.
“From a construction perspective, it doesn’t matter if you are putting a drill rig on top of [a foundation] or a wind turbine, it’s the same thing,” pointed out Gryboski, “Houston, is all about building big things offshore.”
He is exactly right, and with this viewpoint he is set to create a brand new livelihood for the American workforce.
“Our belief is that building offshore wind in the U.S. doesn’t mean you take all the European companies and move them here to build things,” he continued, “It’s to take U.S. companies and get them into a new line of business that is a really easy line of business for them to get into.”
The result of this line of thought is more people who know how to build offshore, and a faster roll-out of wind generation world-wide.
This is exactly what we need.
Stop pumping petroleum, build wind mills instead!