New Bedford on the world stage

New Bedford on the world stage

It’s been quite a thrilling few weeks as the New Bedford Ocean Cluster (NBOC) made a splash on the world stage by first traveling to Europe and then finalizing plans for a very special visit to New Bedford by a legend in the global ocean cluster community. 

Let’s start in Denmark…

The #NBOC and six local companies participated in a field trip to Denmark April 23-28 to take a deep dive into the Danish energy value chain, covering wind energy production, innovation, and infrastructure. Over the course of the week, the U.S. delegation (which represented 42 companies working in wind) visited Bladt Industries and Liftra in Aalborg; DTU Wind Energy research institute in Thy; and the Port of Esbjerg, which included stops at Blue Water Shipping and Semco. The week ended with two days at the WindEurope Conference in Copenhagen. The NBOC also had the opportunity to catch up with its partners at NOF and Energy Cluster Denmark, as well as connect with DWP System Supplier and learn about their impressive network of suppliers.

Members of the New Bedford delegation at the WindEurope conference in Copenhagen.

The member companies that joined the NBOC on the trip were Coast Line Transfers LLC, New Bedford Foss Marine Terminal, Shoreline Offshore, Imtra, Brownell Boat Stands, and Windward Power Systems

“We are thrilled to have had the opportunity to represent New Bedford at WindEurope 2023,” says Jennifer Downing, Executive Director of the New Bedford Ocean Cluster. “The conference was a great opportunity to experience one of the most successful offshore wind industries in the world up close, and to connect New Bedford – the site of America’s first commercial-scale offshore wind farm – to  other leaders in the field.”

WindEurope is a leading trade association in the European wind energy industry. The WindEurope Conference is a major event that brings together industry leaders, policymakers, and other stakeholders to discuss the latest trends and innovations in the wind energy sector. The conference provides a platform for networking, sharing knowledge, and exploring business opportunities in the industry.

“I think the trip was a big success,” reflects Downing, “as our companies from New Bedford gained valuable insights into the latest trends in the wind energy industry and had the opportunity to participate in a series of one-on-one business meetings with Danish companies to showcase their products, services, and explore partnership opportunities.”

Leaving jet lag behind, as soon as Downing arrived back in the United States, she dove into finalizing plans for a  visit to New Bedford by Thor Sigfusson, Founder of the Iceland Ocean Cluster on May 17. During his visit to New Bedford, Sigfusson will share his insights on the IOC’s successful 100% Fish Project with the NBOC’s newly established Fisheries Advisory Committee. 

The Iceland Ocean Cluster, which the NBOC in part is modeled after, is a business network that brings together entrepreneurs, scientists, and other stakeholders in the Icelandic marine industry. The cluster fosters collaboration and innovation with a focus on sustainability and responsible resource management. The Iceland Ocean Cluster is a leader in the field of ocean innovation, and its members have developed numerous groundbreaking products and technologies for the marine industry.

Sigfusson has received numerous awards for his contributions to the marine industry, including the Iceland Innovation Prize and the Nordic Council Nature and Environment Prize. He is a sought-after speaker and has given talks at conferences and events around the world on the topics of innovation, sustainability, and responsible resource management in the marine industry.

“The NBOC signed a partnership agreement with the IOC back in 2017 to be a part of the global ocean cluster network. Networks and ideas exchange can be incredibly valuable,” explains Downing. “Having Thor visit New Bedford and meet with local fisheries is all about sharing ideas and successful models that might be able to take shape in the Port and contribute to the advancement of our commercial fishing industry. We don’t have to recreate the wheel and we have good partners like the IOC who want to show us the way.”


  • The NBOC team


THURSDAY, MAY 18 – SOLD OUT! Offshore Wind Drinks Live is coming to New Bedford! Join the New Bedford Ocean Cluster and our fabulous group of co-hosts for a fun evening of networking, light hors d’oeuvres, and spirits with local offshore wind industry professionals at Cisco Brewers. Contact Jennifer Downing directly to join the wait list. 

Thank you to our co-hosts: Coast Line Transfers LLC, Crowley, New Bedford Foss Marine Terminal, Marine Safety Consultants, Inc., Norton Lilly International, Shoreline Offshore, TerraSond Limited, and Vineyard Wind.

PROPOSALS DUE BY JULY 13: The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation is soliciting proposals to promote the development and adoption of innovative gear technologies that reduce the risk of lethal or sub-lethal fishing gear entanglement for the critically endangered North Atlantic right whale (NARW) in fixed gear fisheries throughout New England. The Fisheries Innovation Fund (FIF): New England Gear Innovation Fund program is assessing the funding need of the region and will award grants towards that need, providing up to $18 million in grants through this solicitation, pending availability of funding. Find out more here.


In Thy, Denmark, members of the U.S. delegation visit DTU Wind Energy testing center.

DOUBLING DOWN ON OFFSHORE WIND: Healey-Driscoll Administration Files Historic Draft RFP for Massachusetts’ Fourth Offshore Wind Solicitation: The RFP represents the largest ever solicitation in New England at 3,600 MW, more than 25% of the state’s annual electricity demand. Read the news release here

PERSPECTIVE: MA Gov. Maura Healey wants to double the amount of wind power in the Massachusetts pipeline – officials released a draft proposal asking offshore wind developers for their plans to produce another 3,600 megawatts of offshore wind power. If approved, it would be the biggest-ever solicitation of wind energy in New England history. Read more here.

BUILDING OFFSHORE WIND: “That first barge with blades stacked on it, it will be kind of a ‘holy cow’ moment.” — New Bedford Port Authority Director Gordon Carr in this story from the New Bedford Light

FISHING AND OFFSHORE WIND WORKING TOGETHER: “Local fishermen bring tremendous value to our operations. Their unique local knowledge and network is a huge part of the successful construction of Vineyard Wind,” said Vineyard Wind CEO Klaus S. Moeller.  “This emphasizes that the development of offshore wind would bring opportunities for our industries to work together, and we hope that the precedents we’ve set will become the norm for each and every project.” Via Vineyard Wind; full release here

SUPPORTING OFFSHORE WIND EMPLOYERS: The MassHire Greater New Bedford Workforce Board (GNBWB) has supported employers by conducting regional welding training and partnering with local area maritime companies that supply services within the offshore wind industry. Read more in this blog post.

OCEAN ENERGY INNOVATION: This project, funded with $300,000 from the Massachusetts Seaport Economic Council, is designed to help alternative power developers to learn more about how their systems work in an open ocean environment near shore. Find out more here.

SEAFOOD STRATEGY: Our partners at the New Bedford Port Authority, representing the most profitable fishing port in the country, reviewed and submitted comments pertaining to the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries draft National Seafood Strategy as a way to highlight the role and importance the Port of New Bedford plays to the entire seafood industry. Details at this link.


You can join the New Bedford Ocean Cluster and connect with innovators and entrepreneurs who are transforming the ocean economy! From sustainable fishing to the offshore wind industry, together we’re shaping the future of the blue economy. Inquire through our Members page here.

The New Bedford Ocean Cluster maintains an ongoing social media presence on Facebook and LInkedIn. You can “Like” and “Follow” each page to receive news updates throughout the month between newsletters. #NBOC #newbedfordoceancluster

Thank you to our partners and members!

NBOC makes a splash in Baltimore

NBOC makes a splash in Baltimore

The old saying that March either comes in like a lion or a lamb comes to mind when we think about how the month ended this year for New Bedford Ocean Cluster members and partners: it definitely ended with a roar!

City of New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell and NBOC Exec. Dir. Jen Downing in Baltimore, MD.

The New Bedford Ocean Cluster (NBOC) made a significant impact at the 2023 International Offshore Wind Partnering Forum (IPF) held in Baltimore, MD during the last week of March. As the premier offshore wind energy conference in the Americas, IPF brought together global leaders and businesses in the supply chain to discuss the latest industry updates, from technology and policy to safety and siting.

Mayor Mitchell of the City of New Bedford was a keynote speaker for IPF’s Ports & Logistics working group, where he discussed the challenges and opportunities U.S. OSW ports face. 

Jennifer Downing, Executive Director of the NBOC, participated as a panelist in  a Regional Update Breakfast on the topic of how community-based clusters are helping to advance the U.S. offshore wind industry. 

Jennifer Menard, Vice President of the National Offshore Wind Institute/Bristol Community College, participated in a workshop discussing partnership case studies, where academic and industry partnerships were highlighted as critical for meeting offshore wind workforce development needs. 

Ed Washburn, Managing Director of Coast Line Transfers and former Director of the New Bedford Port Authority, shared his expertise in a workshop focused on project readiness and best practices for managing global supply chain constraints.

As the offshore wind energy industry rapidly forms off the shore and centers around the Port of New Bedford, the NBOC’s presence and contributions at IPF 2023 showcased its vital role in the industry on behalf of the region’s maritime interests. 

IPF 2023 marked the 10th anniversary of the forum and offered unparalleled networking opportunities and timely updates on the industry. The NBOC demonstrated the power of clusters and the positive impact they can have on the industry and the community at the forum. 

It was thrilling to represent the greater New Bedford region at this milestone offshore wind forum, hosted by the Business Network for Offshore Wind. IPF connects global leaders and businesses to each other, and the NBOC was proud to take its seat at the table and shake hands.


  • The NBOC Team

Commercial Fishing & Processing Pillar News:

After a busy year of getting the organization of the ground, the NBOC is excited to be launching the work of its Fisheries Advisory Committee, to serve as a central voice behind the development of the ocean cluster’s Commercial Fishing & Processing Pillar. Comprised of key stakeholders from New Bedford’s seafood industry, the NBOC’s Fisheries Advisory Committee (FAC) will serve as a deliberative platform for collaboration and business-to-business activity and will help to ensure that the ocean cluster continues to establish itself in a way that aligns with stakeholder interests and leverages existing strengths, while helping to advance new projects and partnerships. As it relates to offshore wind, this group will be an essential voice in establishing a mutually beneficial relationship and forum for regular discussion and coordination between the fishing and offshore renewable energy industries.

The first meeting of the FAC will be held on May 17. During their Kick-off meeting, the FAC will have the opportunity to meet with Thor Sigfusson, Founder of the Iceland Ocean Cluster during his North American learning and networking tour. The Iceland Ocean Cluster is a pioneer in the “100% Fish” movement to inspire and support the seafood industry to utilize more of each fish to increase value and foster new business opportunities. The NBOC signed an MOU with the IOC back in 2017 with the intention to collaborate and share knowledge across clusters. More on the work of the FAC and Thor’s visit in May.


The NBOC, in partnership with the Greater New England Minority Supplier Development Council (GNEMSDC) and the Massachusetts Supplier Diversity Office (SDO) are hosting a Community Outreach Forum on April 13th from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Waypoint Event Center. The evening will include an introduction to the resources and services offered by the GNEMSDC and MA SDO, networking, and light hors d’oeuvres and spirits. The event is free, but registration is required. For more information and to register click here

The next orientation to #offshorewind from Bristol Community College’s NOWI begins Wednesday, April 5. Details at the link


Get caught up on all the activity associated with the #offshorewind industry centered around New Bedford in this comprehensive article by Southcoast Today

The New Bedford Foss Marine Terminal on the waterfront under construction since last July will open this summer if all goes according to plan. The new berthing facilities for a range of vessels including crew transfer vessels, service operation vessels and Foss Offshore Wind tug boats and barges are designed to support the offshore wind industry. Read more here.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is buying pollock, haddock, and ocean perch fillets worth USD 28.8 million (EUR 26.8 million) in its latest round of purchases for its child nutrition and domestic food assistance programs, and the bulk of it is being received by two Port of New Bedford companies. Find out which here.

“GRIPPERS” arrive at the Port of New Bedford: The construction of offshore wind farms involves driving large-diameter steel monopiles into the seabed. The piles then serve as the foundation for installing wind turbine towers. Keeping the pile vertical while driving it with a hydraulic hammer poses a serious challenge, especially in the presence of large currents and waves. Gripper arm holds and maintains the pile’s vertical position while it is driven. Above, New Bedford Cable Network captured the arrival on video. 

Undergraduate and graduate level university students and their professors will be gathering in New Bedford and Fairhaven this fall as part of the Envision Resilience Challenge, a student design studio and community engagement program focusing on learning to live with climate change. The article is here.

Gov. Maura Healey announced the administration’s plans for expanded offshore wind funding during a visit to the Marine Commerce Terminal, where Vineyard Wind will soon be staging the nation’s first large-scale offshore wind development. New Bedford Light reports.

Beginning this November, every case of New Bedford’s Northern Wind scallops sourced from the Northeast U.S. scallop fishery will have third-party traceability of the products origin, harvest area, and landing-date. Details here.

Ships carrying turbines for the nation’s first major offshore wind farm are scheduled to arrive in New Bedford this spring, where a shrinking longshoremen’s union is hoping to rebuild itself unloading a new type of cargo. Read more here. 


MEMBERSHIP: The NBOC is pleased to welcome new member, IMTRA! The boating, transportation, energy and marine product company offers high-quality products for the recreational and commercial marine markets, as well as the transportation and energy industries. Find out more about them here

Join the New Bedford Ocean Cluster and connect with innovators and entrepreneurs who are transforming the ocean economy! From sustainable fishing to the offshore wind industry, together we’re shaping the future of the blue economy. Inquire through our Members page here.

The New Bedford Ocean Cluster maintains an ongoing social media presence on Facebook and LInkedIn. You can “Like” and “Follow” each page to receive news updates throughout the month between newsletters. #NBOC #newbedfordoceancluster

Thank you to our partners and members!

New Bedford Ocean Cluster February 2023 Newsletter

New Bedford Ocean Cluster February 2023 Newsletter

NBOC at Home and on the Road

This month, we are excited to share with you NBOC plans for the upcoming spring season. Our focus on growth continues as we gear up for a busy few months of travel and engagement efforts to raise the profile of the Port of New Bedford and support our local marine businesses. Toward that end, we have exciting news to share regarding our operations and expansion efforts.

First, we are thrilled to announce that we are looking to hire a Business Development Manager as our second staff person. This strategic move is aimed at expanding our capacity to assist local businesses and provide more opportunities for networking, learning, and information sharing. It will also help us achieve a  key goal of attracting commercial investment in our local marine industry economy. Read more or apply for the position here. We are also excited to announce that the NBOC is a participating employer in the “Closing the Experience Gap” program funded by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center and will be bringing on an intern from UMass Dartmouth over the next 12 weeks to support our Act Local program. The goal of “Closing the Experience Gap” is to expose UMass Dartmouth students to careers in offshore wind.

Additionally, we are launching our Fisheries Advisory Committee, which will play a key role in building out one of NBOC’s key pillars: Commercial Fishing & Processing. The individuals who will make up the Committee have significant fishing industry experience and a deep knowledge of the Port of New Bedford. (We’ll bring you more news about this next month, as well as plans to bring on more members to our Board of Directors.)

Hitting the road, we are excited to attend the Business Network for Offshore Wind International Partnership Forum in Baltimore in March. NBOC will be attending, exhibiting, and speaking at the event. Our very own Executive Director, Jennifer Downing will be a speaker on a panel focused on innovation clusters and the benefits of community-based organizations in improving the livelihood of local maritime communities. (See more under “Events” below.)

Finally, we are thrilled to share that the NBOC and six local businesses will visit Denmark as part of a U.S. delegation of offshore wind companies in April. This trip will offer our local companies an opportunity to network and explore business opportunities with Danish offshore wind companies and visit key offshore wind industry sites, including the successful Port of Esbjerg. 

We hope that you are as excited as we are about these upcoming significant milestones and the growth they represent for the NBOC and our local businesses. We remain committed to supporting our local economy, bringing commercial investment to the Port of New Bedford, and expanding our role as a convener, connector, and partner to its dynamic maritime business community. 

Thank you for your continued input and support.


The NBOC Team


Bristol Community College’s National Offshore Wind Institute (NOWI), located in New Bedford, MA, is currently seeking Basic Safety Trainers and Basic Technical Trainers. The trainers will go through an extensive Train the Trainer program to become GWO certified, including eight weeks of training with NOWI partners at Maersk Training – who are GWO certified. (GWO is the globally recognized training standards organization for offshore wind.) Find out more here.

PAID INTERNSHIP: The NBOC is hosting an internship through the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth and supported by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center’s Closing the Experience Gap program. We’re excited to participate in the program and provide a student the opportunity to work in the Offshore Wind industry! Learn more here.

VINEYARD WIND: Review current openings associated with Vineyard Wind 1 at this link. Please note that project construction will be done by companies contracted by Vineyard Wind.


COASTIN’: Massachusetts coastal lawmakers presented several pieces of legislation  that would advance marine industries while also focusing on wildlife conservation and habitat protection. Southcoast Today looks at how the legislation could affect New Bedford. 

COMMERCIAL FISHING PLAN: NOAA Fisheries released its draft National Seafood Strategy. It is open for public comment through March 16, 2023. Written comments can be submitted at this link.

A FIRST FOR VINEYARD WIND: Vineyard Wind, a joint venture between AVANGRID, Inc. (NYSE: AGR), and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP), recently submitted its first annual report to the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER) entitled, “Vineyard Wind 1 Impact on Jobs and Economic Output.” Read it at this link.

OFFSHORE WIND IMPACT: The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) is moving forward with the next key step for the development of one of Massachusetts’ offshore wind farms. On February 13, BOEM announced the availability of the draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the proposed SouthCoast Wind (formerly Mayflower Wind) energy project offshore Massachusetts. It begins a process of a 45-day comment period as part of the review by BOEM as the project moves into the final stage of permitting and approvals. Read more here.

THE BIG PURCHASE: The U.S. Department of Agriculture will buy Atlantic haddock, pollock, and perch from domestic fisheries on the U.S. East Coast to supply food banks. Saving Seafood has the story here


APPLY BY MARCH 1: The Massachusetts Maritime Academy has added a second date to their Spring 2023 Career Fair. Thursday, March 29 is sold out, but if you register by March 1, space will be available on the second date of Friday, March 30. You can do that at this link.

ON MARCH 2, Massachusetts High School Educators and Students are invited to an invitation-only event: Premiere Sustainable Career Pathways Video Series & SustainWDN™ Green Job Shadow Day. Oscar Tobacia, Offshore Wind Engineer Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind, will be on hand for the premiere of The Insitute’s Sustainable Career Pathways Video Series. In this video series, Oscar shares his journey and encourages young people to find mentors to guide them as they explore their careers. The Institute’s Sustainability Coordinator Trevor Tanaka will share the Climate Education Curriculum’s Sustainable Career Pathways. Register here.

BEGINNING MARCH 7: Vineyard Wind and the Offshore Wind Business Network are sponsoring a free, three-day training for local business owners examining how they can be a part of the supply-chain needed for offshore wind development. Happening on March 7, 8 and 9 at the Verdean Veterans Memorial Hall on Purchase Street in New Bedford, it will be geared toward under-represented groups – African-American, Native American, Women, Veteran, Portuguese-American and LGBTQ+ owned businesses. Reserve a spot at this link.

BEGINNING MARCH 12: The Seafood Expo North America/Seafood Processing North America takes place March 12-14, 2023 in Boston. See what’s in store here.

MARCH 28-30 – The 2023 International Offshore Wind Partnering Forum (IPF) will take place in Baltimore, Maryland. The IPF is the premier offshore wind energy conference in the Americas. Hosted by the Business Network for Offshore Wind, IPF connects global leaders and businesses in the supply chain, offers unparalleled networking opportunities, and delivers the most timely and relevant updates on the industry, from technology and policy, to safety and siting. (Find out more here.)

NBOC Executive Director Jennifer Downing will be a speaker on the following panel: What a Cluster! The Benefits of Community-Based Organization – The word “cluster” can bring up many different connotations, but the goal of community-based clusters is to improve the livelihood of local communities, environment, and other focus areas. 

As it relates to offshore wind, “cluster” generally refers to a group of organizations or businesses clustered around a space, whether conceptually or physically in one space, to embody and represent the idea of strength in numbers. All clusters have their own personality, depending on their focus areas. 

Representatives from community-based clusters in Massachusetts, like the New Bedford Ocean Cluster, and Rhode Island will share the work on their collective clusters and the impacts they are having on the community at large.


The New Bedford Ocean Cluster maintains an ongoing social media presence on Facebook and LInkedIn. You can “Like” and “Follow” each page to receive news updates throughout the month between newsletters. #NBOC #newbedfordoceancluster

Thank you to our partners and members!

New Bedford Ocean Cluster January 2023 Newsletter

New Bedford Ocean Cluster January 2023 Newsletter

If you build it…

We’re all familiar with the saying “If you build it, they will come” from the classic Kevin Costner film, “Field of Dreams.” In essence, it means that if you put effort and faith into the success of a project, It’s more likely to succeed.

On Thursday, January 12 at the New Bedford Offshore Wind Career Fair, roughly 500 people came to the Andrea McCoy Recreation Center in the city to show that they’re prepared to put their effort and faith into the burgeoning offshore wind industry in the greater New Bedford region.

City of New Bedford Jon Mitchell took to Twitter to write, “If @VineyardWindUS’s jobs fair today was any indication, Greater #newbedford is ready to dive right in with an industry that at long last is about to launch in the US.”

Former Mayor – and current NBOC Board of Directors President – John Bullard told radio station WBSM, “The message of this jobs fair is that offshore wind is here today.”

The station’s report captured the exuberant feeling at the Career Fair: Booths were lined along the gymnasium with local companies, labor organizations, and major national corporations such as General Electric that were looking to hire. There was also a virtual reality booth where attendees could get an immersive experience on what it’s like to work on a wind turbine.” 

We’d also like to note that Trinity Day Academy students, facilitated by two Culinary Instructors, served some delicious chow from their cool new food truck (pictured). After all, you can’t build the future on an empty stomach!

If there was a festive mood in the air at the New Bedford Offshore Wind Career Fair, it’s because there was so much on the table. Southcoast Today reported that “Open positions at the career fair included electricians, welders, pipe fitters, mechanics, fabricators, carpenters, painters, laborers, technicians, marine life observers, GIS analysts, deck hands, mates, captains, safety managers, equipment operators, project managers and many others.” 

The NBOC was thrilled to co-host the Offshore Wind Career Fair with Vineyard Wind and New Bedford Parks, Recreation, and Beaches. 

“I think this is only the beginning,” Klaus Mueller, CEO of Vineyard Wind, told Southcoast Today. “We expect to hire at least 200 out of this effort and for the future there’s other projects after us. Also the wind farm is expected to go on for 30 years so there will be plenty of opportunities.”

We agree – and look forward to partnering with the OSW industry to help to promote and facilitate future offshore wind career fairs and Meet-the-Buyer events to engage our local businesses in the industry. Because the wind energy farms we’re creating off our coast aren’t just fields of dreams any longer.

They’re today’s reality.

In fact, the NBOC is hiring, too! We’re seeking a full-time Business Development Manager to support the organization’s business engagement, recruitment, and retention objectives as they relate to both cluster membership and attracting long-term investment to advance New Bedford’s marine economy. Please see the full job announcement at this link for more information.

  • Jennifer Downing, NBOC Executive Director



FREE TRAINING: The NBOC is pleased to share that the Business Network for Offshore Wind and Vineyard Wind are offering a free one-day training (valued at $325) on the offshore wind energy supply chain. The training is titled “Offshore Wind Ready” and it is geared towards businesses based in Massachusetts that are owned by underrepresented groups, including women, veterans, global majority members, tribes, people with disabilities and members of the LGBTQ community. This training is an excellent opportunity for businesses to learn more about the offshore wind industry and how to enter the supply chain. It will take place on Wednesday, February 8, 2023 from 10 AM to 4 PM at the New Bedford Whaling Museum. Along with the training, breakfast and lunch will also be provided. Click here to register.

PAID INTERNSHIP: The NBOC is hosting an internship through the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth and supported by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center’s Closing the Experience Gap program. We’re excited to participate in the program and provide a student the opportunity to work in the Offshore Wind industry! Learn more here.

VINEYARD WIND: Review current openings associated with Vineyard Wind 1 at this link. Please note that project construction will be done by companies contracted by Vineyard Wind.

NBOC Welcomes Blue Tech Delegation to New Bedford

The NBOC hosted a group of over 40 marine technology companies on Thursday, January 26 in New Bedford. About 20 of the companies represented a Canadian delegation organized by the Consulate General of Canada in Boston. 

The visit to New Bedford, which included a speaking program and tours of the Port and the School for Marine Sciences & Technology (SMAST), was planned in coordination with the Blue Innovation Symposium, the premier event in New England for connecting the marine technology industry for education, networking and facilitating partnering opportunities. The conference brings together a broad spectrum of representatives of the marine technology industry from the US and beyond. 

Presentations were made by Mayor Jon Mitchell, NBOC Executive Director Jennifer Downing, New Bedford Port Authority Director Gordon Carr, Bruce Carlisle from the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, and Mark Sullivan of the Massachusetts Office for International Trade and Investment.

NBOC Executive Director Jennifer Downing commented, “Advancing blue technology in greater New Bedford is an important pillar at the New Bedford Ocean Cluster. With the Port of New Bedford’s commercial uses expanding to include offshore wind and aquaculture, and with its proximity to leading marine science institutions like SMAST and WHOI, greater New Bedford is poised to become a vibrant ecosystem of blue tech companies. We look forward to working more closely with the Blue Venture Forum and other well-established blue technology networks to explore opportunities for innovation that can strengthen our marine economy and address the sustainability and health of the ocean.” 

The NBOC wishes to thank Toby Stapleton at the Blue Venture Forum, Erin Daily Donahue at the General Consulate of Canada in Boston, and Dr. Ramprasad Balasubramanian at UMass Dartmouth for supporting the event.


Get ready for Greentown Labs #GoEnergize2023! Go Energize 2023 with Vineyard Wind and MassCEC seeks to decarbonize the energy sector through the responsible development of the domestic offshore wind industry. In a new program, they are seeking collaborative innovations that change how energy is generated, stored, transported, and consumed. Go Energize 2023 is seeking applications from startups with a technology readiness level (TRL) of 3 and higher. Applicants should also be actively commercializing or looking to commercialize within the offshore wind industry. Apply by April 4, 2023 at this link.

Join NOAA on February 8-9 for a virtual symposium to hear from the North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) regarding aquaculture literacy mini-grantees that work to enhance public understanding of aquaculture. Register here.

Lobster Days! At the New Bedford Fishing Heritage Center – Thurs. and Fri., 2/23 & 2/24 • 11am-3pm at the Center (38 Bethel Street, New Bedford) • FREE: Kids bored during school vacation? No longer with the return of Lobster Days! Visit the Center for crafts, story time, and lobster-themed fun. Working lobstermen will be on hand to answer questions and teach you about these interesting critters!


MA Governor Maura Healey at UMass Dartmouth.

LIMITLESS POTENTIAL: MA Governor Maura Healey describes the South Coast as “a place with limitless potential” for renewable energy innovation during a visit to University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. See what she said here.

GE FELLOWS: A GE Fellows Program has been established at the Massachusetts Maritime Academy and will offer scholarships to MA students and workers preparing for careers in the state’s burgeoning wind power and renewable energy industries, with a focus on women, people of color, and residents in underserved communities. Read all about it here.

ON THE NEW BEDFORD WATERFRONT: A revised redevelopment plan and attendant zoning now focus on the periphery of the New Bedford Foss Marine Terminal site around the intersection of MacArthur Drive and Leonard’s Wharf. See what’s on the drawing board here.

DEEP DIVE: How New Bedford Harbor was made more resilient and ready for future development from the company that performed harbor clean-up operations. The inside scoop here

COMMERCIAL FISHING TECHNOLOGY: A new program to plan low- and zero-emissions energy technology for the Massachusetts fishing industry is getting nearly $2 million as part of the recently passed federal Omnibus Appropriations Act for 2023. National Fisherman has the story here.

IN COD WE TRUST: The New England Fishery Management Council has approved a new strategy that it said has a 70% chance of rebuilding cod stock by 2033, per the Associated Press.


The New Bedford Ocean Cluster maintains an ongoing social media presence on Facebook and LInkedIn. You can “Like” and “Follow” each page to receive news updates throughout the month between newsletters. #NBOC #newbedfordoceancluster

Welcome New Members!

This month we extend a warm welcome to new NBOC members Coast Line Transfers, LLC, Common Sense Environmental, Inc., and HeliPPE. They join our partners and members below. 

Membership in the NBOC provides an opportunity to help shape future growth and advancement from the best possible vantage point. Membership keeps you informed on developments happening across marine industries locally and over the horizon. 

If you’re interested in becoming a member, contact Jennifer Downing, NBOC Executive Director (

Thank you to our partners and members!

New Bedford Ocean Cluster December 2022 Newsletter

New Bedford Ocean Cluster December 2022 Newsletter

Looking back and facing forward…

The past year was a significant one for the New Bedford Ocean Cluster. After laying the groundwork for several years, the NBOC took some giant leaps forward to become an active force in New Bedford’s maritime economy. As 2022 draws to a close and 2023 beckons, we’d like to reflect on where we’ve been and we’re going.

Soon after I started at the NBOC, I conducted a listening tour of a wide range of marine businesses and stakeholders to better understand the landscape. What I learned in those conversations contributed to the development of a one-year organizational work plan and three-year Offshore Wind Strategic Roadmap. 

Our outreach and engagement will continue into 2023, as we work to assemble industry-led advisory committees to give voice and strategic direction to all our pillars – commercial fishing and processing, aquaculture, innovation and technology, and offshore wind. These valuable committees will ensure that the NBOC continues to develop itself in ways that will support the priorities and concerns of New Bedford’s marine business community, positions the organization and region for growth, and aligns itself with the values of a multifaceted maritime economy.

The NBOC thus made a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and through the establishment of our DEI Committee and solidifying DEI within our by-laws, we have outlined several important first steps to make sure the values of access and inclusion are woven into who we are as an organization. 

We also launched a membership initiative in 2022, which we’ll look to ramp up in the coming year. A robust cluster starts with a diverse and insightful membership. NBOC member companies will be a part of a growing marine industry who share a passion for doing business in New Bedford and who wish to expand their visibility and success. Our goal is to keep the NBOC member network up to date on developments happening across marine industries locally and beyond; to offer regular events to share new innovations and provide an opportunity for business-to-business networking, and exposure for your company. And finally, through the connections we’re making at the national and international level, we’ll help to facilitate valuable connections to support the growth of your business.

Meanwhile, we continue to implement and enhance our Act Local program, which has at its core making connections between top tier offshore wind companies and local businesses who have services and products that can support the offshore wind industry. We are thankful to Vineyard Wind for their investment in seeding this important local program that we hope will grow to support other offshore wind projects here in the Commonwealth.

We also launched an Offshore Wind Wall of Achievement, a campaign to showcase and promote local companies that are already winning business in offshore wind. Local companies like Imtra, A.I.S. Observers, Gladding-Hearn Shipbuilding and others will be highlighted widely to bring attention to their businesses and to inspire other companies to get involved. If you are working in OSW and want to be a part of our campaign, please let us know. We want to promote your success in the year ahead!

During 2023, the NBOC plans a significant build out of our website to include a local supply chain directory and an interactive platform to serve as a clearinghouse of information, to better connect buyers and sellers, and  to support and facilitate marine business-to-business engagement. 

This monthly newsletter is also part of the initiatives we undertook during 2022. Communicating with all of you on a regular basis is a core principle of our commitment to the greater New Bedford region.

Finally, we look ahead to 2023 with gratitude and excitement for the relationships and partnerships we are building with incredible industry associations and cluster organizations across the globe. We have learned, and will continue to learn, so much from our friends at the Iceland Ocean Cluster, Belgian Blue Cluster, Denmark Energy Cluster, and NOF and Energi Coast in the UK.

So, thanks for reading and enjoy the best of the holiday season with friends, family and coworkers – until we meet again in 2023!

Happy New Year from the New Bedford Ocean Cluster.


  • Jennifer Downing, NBOC Executive Director


OFFSHORE WIND JOB FAIR: Please join the New Bedford Ocean Cluster, Vineyard Wind, and New Bedford Parks, Recreation & Beaches on Thursday, January 12, 2023 for an Offshore Wind Job Far at the Andrea McCoy Recreation Center, 181 Hillman Street, New Bedford, from 3-7:00 p.m. Learn about the extensive opportunities available in the wind industry, from office to offshore; 25 companies, ACTIVELY HIRING, will be in attendance, as well as training and educational organizations. Reserved a spot at the free event at this link.


WANT TO WORK IN OFFSHORE WIND? Review current openings associated with Vineyard Wind 1 at this link. Please note that project construction will be done by companies contracted by Vineyard Wind.


THE TWO CLUSTERS: The NBOC had a great morning hosting Gustavo Ferraz de Luna of the Energy Cluster Denmark here in New Bedford early in December. Gustavo had an opportunity to visit several of the city’s offshore wind port assets, including the New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal, New Bedford Foss Marine Terminal, North Terminal, and Shoreline Marine Terminal. We look forward to continuing to explore how our two clusters can collaborate to strengthen the blue economy. (Thank you to Tim Griffin, Andrew B. Saunders, Ceasar C. Duarte Jr., John Regan, and Michael Quinn for sharing their experiences during the port tour!)

STATE INVESTMENT: Four major Port of New Bedford projects are set to receive $80 million in funding from the state. City of New Bedford Mayor Jon MItchell commented, “New Bedford can compete for jobs and investment from offshore wind, fishing and other maritime industries if it has useful infrastructure ready for them.” Read all about the projects here

STATE INVESTMENT Part II: The $80 million investment at the Port of New Bedford was part of a larger package announced by Governor Charlie Baker during a press conference held at the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center Wind Technology Testing Center in Charlestown. In total, the Baker administration on Tuesday, Dec. 20  announced $180 million in infrastructure funding for projects designed to support the state’s burgeoning offshore wind industry. Boston Globe story here

TALKING TURBINES: Reporter Jeanette Barnes looks at exactly how Vineyard Wind will be built. “Towers are shipped in sections and assembled at the staging port — in Vineyard Wind’s case, New Bedford.” Read and listen here

HOMECOMING: The historic Ernestina-Morrissey schooner returned to the Port of New Bedford last month. On Sat. Dec. 17 a homecoming celebration was held on State Pier, and you can view a photo slide show of the special event here

COMMERCIAL FISHING: A new 10-year rebuilding plan for Gulf of Maine cod has a 70 percent probability of rebuilding the beleaguered stock by 2033, according to the New England Fishery Management Council’s latest changes to Northeast groundfish management. National Fisherman has the details here

FUNDING PROPOSAL: Nine Northeast states have set out to develop a regional fund to compensate the fishing industry for impacts and economic losses caused by offshore wind development. After more than a year of discussion, they are now seeking feedback from both the wind and fishing industries. Full details here.

THE SURVEY SAYS: NOAA Fisheries and the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) are announcing a joint strategy to address potential impacts of offshore wind energy development on NOAA Fisheries’ scientific surveys. Find out more here


The New Bedford Ocean Cluster maintains an ongoing social media presence on Facebook and LInkedIn. You can “Like” and “Follow” each page to receive news updates throughout the month between newsletters. #NBOC #newbedfordoceancluster

Thank you to our partners and members!