Crown Estate, Energy Institute Publish Offshore Renewables Construction Vessel Guideline

The Crown Estate and the Energy Institute (EI) have collaborated on the development of the publication ‘Construction vessel guideline for the offshore renewables industry’ to support the safe and successful delivery of offshore renewable energy projects in the UK. 

This guideline follows on from the publication ‘Vessel safety guide – Guidance for offshore renewable energy developers’, published by RenewableUK in January 2012. Working closely with industry, this new document has been produced to assist developers and the supply chain in the planning and construction of offshore renewable energy projects, with particular focus on offshore wind farms in the UK. The publication aims to pro-actively assist developers in reducing construction risk and contribute to providing a solid foundation for safe and efficient offshore operations.

Huub den Rooijen, our Head of Offshore Wind, said: “This guideline for offshore renewable construction vessels is a great example of how the sector can work together, where appropriate, to help bring down costs through ensuring that health and safety strategies are fully integrated into the lifecycle of projects from the outset and delivering technically and commercially successful projects.”

Martin Maeso CEnv MEI, Knowledge Director, Energy Institute, added: “The EI is delighted to be able to work with The Crown Estate in publishing this important guidance. The EI aims to work with both industry and regulators across the energy sector to impart knowledge, develop skills and disseminate good practice. This guidance document on construction vessels used in the offshore wind industry is an excellent example of cooperation across a number of parties within the sector.”

As the offshore wind industry has matured, the size and complexity of offshore wind projects has increased and they are now often sited further offshore. This guideline has therefore been designed to reflect the likely increased need for further vessel development and capabilities, and aims to assist development teams in the planning and resourcing of such projects.

The aims of the guideline are to:

  • Offer information and insight on key health and safety and related elements in the selection of vessels and project equipment for offshore operations, to mitigate risks, provide a solid foundation for the decision making of developers and also assist the expectations of the supply chain.
  • Enable developers to have an appropriate dialogue with contractors and sub-contractors.
  • Provide developers with key information to enable them to instruct third parties to ensure an appropriate vessel selection.
  • Provide developers with information to inform the audit of all vessels and equipment prior to contracting together with the vital assessment of the supplier’s capability, training record and experience of key personnel.
  • Provide a comprehensive reference to the applicable regulations and other applicable guidance in the UK.

While the guideline mainly focuses on assisting offshore wind development projects, many sections of information can also be used to assist wave and tidal stream projects.

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Press release, September 26, 2014; Image: The Crown Estate