Equinor representatives network at Equinor Long Island Supply Chain Expo...

Equinor representatives network at Equinor Long Island Supply Chain Expo at Farmingdale State College on Friday. Credit: Morgan Campbell

The offshore wind farms to be built south and east of Long Island need everything from cranes, tools and trailers for onshore construction and food for the technicians who will live on sea vessels to security guards and landscapers for operations centers.

Equinor, a Norwegian wind-farm developer, and its partner, BP PLC, are constructing three of the five farms approved by New York State. Together, the three farms will generate electricity for 2 million homes beginning in 2026-28.

Equinor officials said given the farms’ proximity to the Island, it makes sense for the company to purchase goods and services locally whenever possible. Equinor also is required to spend more than $3.4 billion with businesses in the state under contracts signed with the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority.

“We now need to find and source all the various bits of the [offshore wind-farm] system,” said Harriet Green, operations manager at Equinor.


  • The offshore wind farms, to be built off Long Island, will need a wide range of goods and services, some of which may be supplied locally.
  • Businesses on Long Island should sign-up for a state-run database of suppliers to demonstrate their interest in working with the wind farm developers, executives said at an event organized by Equinor, which is building three wind farms.
  • The operation and maintenance of the farms over 30-plus years may offer more opportunities to local subcontractors than the construction phase, the executives said. 

“Anything you can imagine, we need. For example, everyone that comes to work is going to need to eat. They’re maybe going to need wraparound services that enable them to work, such as childcare and transportation [to and from work],” she said.

Green, along with executives of Equinor’s largest contractors, spoke to local business owners on Friday about subcontracting opportunities. About 200 people attended the Equinor Offshore Wind Supply Chain Expo at Farmingdale State College.

While construction of the offshore wind farms is getting attention now, Green said Equinor will need spare parts and other supplies for decades to maintain the farms.

“Anything that fails, we’re going to need to replace or repair … [and] we’re going to be looking at how we can do that locally,” she said.

Thomas Allain, director of offshore service sales at wind-turbine manufacturer Vestas, agreed, saying, “There’s a lot of excitement about the construction. But these turbines are going to be here for 30 years or more. So, there will be servicing [of the turbines] every day for the next 35 to 40 years.”

Business owners wishing to bid for work were directed to sign up for a state-run database of suppliers: https://bit.ly/3Llc1hP.  

“That database is the first place that we look,” said Okera Bullen, a procurement and supply-chain executive at Nexans, a manufacturer of electrical transmission cable. Registering on the database “tells us that you are interested in working in the offshore wind space,” he said.

The Equinor projects are Empire Wind I and Empire Wind II, to be built south of Long Beach, and Beacon Wind I, to be built 60 miles east of Montauk Point and 20 miles south of Nantucket, Massachusetts. 

The latter’s transmission cable will reach land in Astoria, Queens. Miller Marine Services in Port Jefferson helped chart the cable’s pathway through Long Island Sound last fall. The company provided the vessel that scientists and engineers used for the work.

“Equinor will help us thrive, especially with their commitment to utilizing local businesses,” Jimmy Miller, president of Miller Marine, told the crowd at Farmingdale State. “Those were not just words put to paper [in contracts with New York State]. They have acted upon their commitment,” he said, referring to his participation in Beacon Wind I.

Miller’s experience with Equinor was encouraging to other business owners.

The offshore wind farms “are the biggest thing we’ve seen on Long Island for years in terms of the scope, the money and the jobs,” said Paul Sailon, owner of Sailon Auto Electric Inc., a supplier of remanufactured parts for diesel motors. “I came here today to let them know that I exist, and that I can help them.”

Separately, another wind-farm developer, Orsted, and its partner, Eversource, will hold an event for suppliers on April 25 at the Brentwood campus of Suffolk County Community College. To register, go to https://bit.ly/3JgWVHB.  

Orsted has won approval for two wind farms: South Fork Wind and Sunrise Wind, both to be built 30 miles off Montauk. South Fork is expected to begin operating late this year.

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