UK-based onshore and offshore wind, wave and tidal energy companies are now exporting their products and services to 37 countries across six continents, a report published by RenewableUK shows.
Using an illustrative sample of companies involved in the sector, “Export Nation” reveals that 47 UK firms signed 465 contracts worth up to GBP 53 million per company in the past year, working on hundreds of projects in Europe, Asia, North and South America, Africa, and Australia.
Overall, UK exports of wind energy products and services are worth GBP 525 million a year, according to the Office for National Statistics. The new report reveals that current top ten export destinations for UK wind and marine energy companies are, in order of importance, Germany, Taiwan, Denmark, the USA, the Netherlands, France, Belgium, China, Ireland, and South Korea.
Nearly 70% of the contracts were in the offshore wind sector. The companies featured in the report won offshore wind contracts in 15 countries across four continents. Germany is the most popular destination, followed in order by Taiwan, Denmark, the Netherland, and the USA.
UK firms are designing, building and maintaining wind farms onshore and offshore, as well as wave and tidal projects, the report said. Exports from the UK supply chain include manufacturing blades, supplying and installing UK-made power cables on land and underwater, fabricating specialist steelwork, providing helicopters and crew transfer vessels, producing software to maximise power generation, conducting geological surveys, monitoring wildlife, and providing legal and financial services.
Examples of companies cited in the report include Seajacks, based in Great Yarmouth, which won a contract to transport and install more than a hundred giant turbines at the Greater Changhua offshore wind farm in Taiwan using its specialist vessels.
Cheshire-based 3D Web Technologies worked on a 3D computer model for the Bay State Wind project off the coast of Massachusetts, to help those involved to understand the American project’s layout better using virtual reality headsets.
“Renewable energy is providing us with opportunities to act as innovators and leaders in new industries on the world stage,” RenewableUK’s Chief Executive Hugh McNeal said.
”We can capitalise on this even further in the decades ahead, generating billions for our economy, as well as showing global leadership on climate change. In offshore wind, for example, we’ve set a goal of growing our exports five-fold in the next decade.”