UK Firms On Track to Take Half of Local Offshore Wind Cake

  • Business & Finance

A growing number of UK companies are getting involved in the development, construction and operation of offshore wind farms in British waters, with 43% of the expenditure incurred in planning, building and running offshore projects already going to local companies, according to a new report issued during the UK’s first Offshore Wind Week.

During the Offshore Wind Week, the UK’s offshore wind industry committed to annual reporting on UK content to track progress towards the goal of 50% UK content for the offshore wind sector.

The new report, commissioned by Department of Energy and Climate Change, The Crown Estate and RenewableUK on behalf of the Offshore Wind Programme Board, has shown that the British offshore wind industry is well on course to reaching the 50% goal.

RenewableUK’s Deputy Chief Executive, Maf Smith, said: “This report is the first of its kind. UK developers have agreed a common methodology to track UK content across the development, construction and operation of all offshore wind farms. Industry and Government will jointly track progress and publish updates on how UK content changes over time. This first benchmarking report already shows that the industry has made great strides forward in increasing the number of British companies being awarded sought-after contracts to develop, build and maintain projects.”

The report analysed data supplied from 10 UK offshore wind farms, and the projects in the study make up almost 80% of the UK’s current operational capacity.

Over the past year alone, an estimated GBP 840 million of investment in the UK’s offshore wind industry has been retained in the country, and this figure will be significantly higher over the entire lifetime of offshore wind farms, according to the report.

“By jointly committing to reporting on UK content, the offshore wind industry is showing how seriously it takes developing a strong and competitive UK supply chain alongside delivering clean affordable power to consumers,” Benj Sykes, Co-Chair of the Government-Industry Offshore Wind Industry Council, said.

”We expect the amount of UK content to grow as more companies base their operations here. This includes the recent opening of a blade factory on the Isle of Wight, and Siemens’ landmark blade manufacturing and turbine assembly plant scheduled to open in Hull next year. This means more jobs and investment in local communities, proving that the offshore wind industry is making a substantial contribution to the British economy.”

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