March 2, 2021
Hundreds of ELM Supporters Submit Comments on Offshore Wind
Below are the comments that were signed by over 330 ELM supporters calling for improvements to the RFP process for Massachusetts’s next offshore wind project:
Dear Dept. of Energy Resources,
We applaud the addition of new language regarding minority economic participation and environmental justice in the 1600MW 83C III offshore wind procurement. We encourage you to build from this foundation and set significantly higher expectations for racial equity and minority economic participation.
This is the largest such project in the Commonwealth’s history and represents a capital investment of between $4-5 billion. The workers and companies engaged in this next project will have a leg up to become the leaders of tomorrow’s offshore wind industry. Your Administration projects that half of Massachusetts’ energy may come from offshore wind by 2050. This solicitation represents just the beginning of what will be tens of billions of dollars’ worth of economic activity and tens of thousands of jobs in the decades ahead. Choices made today set the course for industry growth and workforce development for the years to come. The Commonwealth should require comprehensive Diversity & Inclusion Plans to be included with developers’ submissions, and give significant weight to these Plans when evaluating the proposals.
We urge DOER to:
1. Evaluate proposals, in significant part, based on submitted plans for creating opportunities for minority and disadvantaged workers, businesses and investors. Among other features, this component of proposals should address the respondent’s plan for training and workforce development, focused on minority and disadvantaged workers; the respondent’s plan to solicit business from minority and disadvantaged contractors; and the respondent’s plan to solicit investment from minority and disadvantaged investors;
2. Require bidders to cooperate with the state Supplier Diversity Office and other state agencies focused on minority and disadvantaged business creation and development;
3. Require that bidders explain how their proposal will mitigate environmental harm and create economic opportunities in environmental justice communities; and
4. Establish a process for the ongoing evaluation of commitments made in selected bids, including by requiring successful bidders to provide regular updates and statistics regarding their progress towards achieving or improving upon those commitments.
Thank you for your consideration.