New Cargo in the Wind for Galveston

Member Updates,

The Port of Galveston is reaping the rewards of expanding its foreign-trade zone (“FTZ”) area with the import of hundreds of enormous wind turbine pieces.

Since April, the port has imported approximately 400 blades and tower pieces, with an estimated 300 scheduled in the coming months. The pieces are offloaded from ships and loaded onto specially designed rail cars and tractor trailer trucks for transport to the central U.S. and Canada. The cargo is imported from Spain, Denmark and other European countries.

The growth has been spurred by the port’s move to authorize additional cargo acreage for its FTZ in late 2023 to accommodate its expanding wind turbine import business in 2024. The port can now designate an additional 23 acres between piers 34 and 41 within its West Port Cargo Complex to stimulate new business.

“Capturing more wind cargo is great for the port, our tenants and the skilled workers who handle this special cargo. These imports are generating tens of thousands of labor hours and are contributing to a cleaner environment,” said Rodger Rees, Galveston Wharves port director and CEO.

The port and its stevedore tenants saw an opportunity to capture more wind business after federal tax incentives authorized in 2022 spurred more wind imports.

“This is another example of the port working with its tenants to maximize growth opportunities and generate more jobs,” Rees said.

He added that Galveston has long been a preferred port for wind turbine importers due to its skilled labor, rail and highway access, and optimum clearances for the components, some 250 feet long. A typical shipment fills a cargo laydown area equal to 7 ½ football fields.