Our guest this episode is Lorry Wagner, president of LEEDCo, the Lake Erie Energy Development Corporation, and the developer of Icebreaker Wind. LEEDCo is fairly unique as an offshore wind developer in that it’s a non-profit organization rather than a for-profit developer. So we start our conversation with the story of LEEDCo’s formation, and then we discuss the Icebreaker Wind project, soon to be the nation’s first and only offshore wind project in fresh waters. We cover the project details, where it stands in the permitting and approval process and the expected construction timetable. Lorry discusses his approach to partnering with Tier 1 suppliers and other businesses to make the project happen, and shares his thoughts on ways to develop a domestic supply chain of local content to serve this new industry. Lorry shares his observations about how the Oceantic Network and the IPF — the Network’s International Partnering Forum conference — have evolved and grown, and we close with him sharing a neat but unexpected development with Icebreaker Wind.
In our conversation Lorry mentioned that Icebreaker Wind has received 13 of the 14 approvals it needs to move forward. Just a couple weeks after we recorded this episode, the project achieved an agreement with staff at the Ohio Power Siting Board. Lorry is optimistic that this agreement will move the project that much closer to getting final approval from the Board and hopefully a permit this fall.
Recorded April 10, 2019. Published June 21, 2019.