Matthew Palmer, vice president, offshore wind manager at WSP USA, a leading engineering and professional services consultancy, has been elected to the board of directors of the Business Network for Offshore Wind.
Palmer, a pioneer in the offshore wind industry and a strong advocate of clean energy development, has more than 30 years’ experience in the acquisition, development and management of power generation assets. He was instrumental in WSP being awarded a contract to provide detailed design engineering services for the wind turbine generator foundations used by Vineyard Wind’s offshore wind project off the Massachusetts coast.
The project will provide 800MW of electricity – enough to supply energy for more than 450,000 homes. The project, being developed by a partnership of Avangrid Renewables and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners, is poised to become the first utility-scale offshore wind farm in the U.S. and the largest offshore wind project in the country after the 30 MW Block Island Wind Farm in Rhode Island. WSP’s partnership with structural and geotechnical consultancy Wood Thilsted allows the firm to provide detailed design services for offshore wind foundations in the U.S. market.
Palmer’s experience spans both renewable and conventional technologies, including wind, solar, natural gas, liquid fuel and solid fuel. His career in offshore wind began 17 years ago with the announcement of the Cape Wind project, where he eventually became engineering project manager. Palmer is leading the U.S. offshore wind business for WSP, and he also serves as principal on the design of the wind turbine generator foundations for the Vineyard Wind project. WSP provides comprehensive consulting, engineering design and project management services to the power industry, with expertise in conventional generation, cogeneration,
hydropower and renewable energy; transmission networks and substations; and facility energy systems and central utility plants. In his role, Palmer supports the efforts of WSP’s renewable energy group – part of the U.S. energy sector – with a focus on expanding WSP’s role in the U.S. offshore wind market.
“Matt’s long and varied experience in the energy industry will provide the Business Network for Offshore Wind with valuable insight and guidance and, most importantly, provide broad representation for WSP in this important industry organization,” said Roger Blair, president of U.S. energy at WSP USA.
“I look forward to supporting the leadership of the board of directors and continuing its thought leadership on critical offshore wind issues with industry stakeholders,” Palmer said. “Adding Matt to our board adds diversity of thought and reflects the range of stakeholders within the offshore wind industry who are dedicated to ensuring America’s electricity grid supports our economy’s changing needs,” said Kevin Pearce, chairman of the board of directors of the network.
Prior to joining WSP, Palmer was a commercial development consultant with Calpine Corporation, and he previously served as chief operating officer for EMI Power Systems in Boston. Palmer was a founding member and the first executive director of Clean Power Now, an organization dedicated to educating communities on renewable energy. He holds a bachelor's degree from Massachusetts Maritime Academy and an MBA from Suffolk University. Palmer is a registered professional engineer and a licensed first-class engineer for stationary power plants.
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