Inspenet, November 18, 2023.
What was once the world’s leading steel plant will become an offshore wind turbine manufacturing facility in the United States. The U.S. Department of Transportation has allocated $47.4 million in funding to develop the Baltimore County Offshore Wind Manufacturing Hub.
These funds will go toward preparing the former Bethlehem Steel shipyard and the future Sparrows Point Steel site, which will be the first permanent offshore wind components factory in Maryland, to handle large loads. Likewise, they will be used to carry out the rehabilitation of the site and for environmental initiatives.
New factory of components for wind turbines
This project demonstrates the increase in interest in renewable energy in the United States. Currently, the country has more than 500 facilities dedicated to the manufacturing of wind energy components, which represents a notable increase compared to the approximately 30 that existed two decades ago. The company US Wind, owned by Renexia, plans to invest $150 million in this new facility, which will specialize in the production of “monopile foundations and other steel elements” necessary for its offshore wind projects in Maryland.
It is estimated that this project will create approximately 500 union jobs and generate total labor income of $1,019,056,500 over a 20-year period. According to an official statement, through the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and the Inflation Reduction Act, manufacturing and employment are recovering in the United States and Maryland.
The old steelworks
The Maryland Steel Company, a subsidiary of the Pennsylvania Steel Company, began steel production at Sparrow’s Point in 1889. By the middle of the 20th century, it had become the largest steel mill in the world, employing 30,000 people. In 1916, the facility was acquired by the Bethlehem Steel Corporation, whose steel played a crucial role in significant construction projects and military manufacturing during both world wars. However, it experienced a gradual decline due to changes in the steel industry, eventually resulting in the complex’s closure and bankruptcy.
Don’t miss any of our posts and follow us on social media!