By Mark Curtis
July 15, 2014
On the water’s off New Bedford, there is hope for another shot in the arm for the local economy.
The Mayor and other dignitaries toured the harbor, updating construction of the new Marine Commerce Terminal.
The facility will be the pre–construction and departure point for off–shore turbine in the Cape Wind project.
That could mean lots of new jobs.
“As we talk with the contractors and see what their manning schedules are going to be, and see what their work schedules are going to be. But we are looking at several hundred for each construction season,” said Gerard Dhooge, of the Maritime Port Council of New England.
The 130 wind turbines and offshore construction could take at least two or three years.
ABC6 Chief Political Reporter said, “This Marine Commercial Terminal project has been on the fast track. Ground was broken here in April o 2013. It is set to be complete this December.”
Also, a leading environmental group has blessed the off–shore wind project, even though the energy produced may be more expensive at first.
“I think there are a lot of ways to look at the cost. First this is new technology and as we have seen with the onshore wind industry and solar industry, costs come down as deployment scales up,” said Catherine Bowers of the National Wildlife Federation.
Leaders are optimistic, the overall New Bedford economy will improve.
“We can still be the leader in commercial fishing and processing, while we become the birthplace of offshore wind. We have a growing cargo sector right now,” said New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell.
The long term goal is to boost the local standard of living, while lowering the cost of energy.