On July 16, wind farm developer Vineyard Wind and the Southeastern Massachusetts Building Trades Council signed a landmark agreement that guarantees local union jobs on the Vineyard Wind 1 project. The parties describe it as "the first project labor agreement for an industrial-scale offshore wind project in the United States."
Vineyard Wind 1 is an 800-megawatt project that will be located 15 miles off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard. It will be the first commercial-scale offshore wind project in the United States.
The project is expected to generate electricity for more than 400,000 homes and businesses in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. It will also create 3,600 full-time equivalent job-years over the life of the project in various disciplines and industries. These include the more than 500 union construction jobs covered by the agreement.
Vineyard Wind will begin delivering clean energy to Massachusetts in 2023.
The Southeastern Massachusetts Building Trades Council represents 20 affiliated unions and thousands of workers throughout the South Coast, Cape Cod and Islands regions of the state. Its membership includes several local branches of the IBEW.
The terms of the agreement ensure that a majority of the workforce will be from local communities, specifically from Bristol, Plymouth, Barnstable and Dukes counties. It also sets concrete hiring targets for women and people of color.
Through the agreement, Vineyard Wind has also pledged to appoint an accountability officer to facilitate an access and opportunity committee and to ensure that contractors are meeting hiring requirements and promoting an inclusive workplace.