French energy major TotalEnergies has opened its UK Offshore Wind Hub in Aberdeen, Scotland.
The Hub was opened by Patrick Pouyanné, Chairman and CEO of TotalEnergies. It will be part of the company’s existing offshore operations centre in Aberdeen and will enable the transition of staff from oil and gas to offshore wind.
”Investing in energy projects in Scotland and the North Sea has been at the heart of TotalEnergies’ history,” Pouyanné said.
”I am proud of the success of our partnership with Scotland and of our joint achievements, in particular the development of the offshore industry. With the energy transition gathering speed, we see Scotland as a great place to broaden our relationship by investing in offshore wind. As a global multi energy company long engaged in UK energy supply, our decision to base our UK Offshore Wind Hub here in Aberdeen is a mark of our confidence in the future of renewables in the UK and our continued commitment to Scotland and the North Sea.”
The announcement comes as TotalEnergies, in partnership with Macquarie’s Green Investment Group and Scottish developer Renewable Infrastructure Development Group (RIDG), takes part in the ScotWind leasing round having proposed a 2 GW offshore wind project called West of Orkney Windfarm.
The partners unveiled plans for a GBP 140 million initiative in an action plan to develop the Scottish supply chain and harbour infrastructure specifically around this project.
Should the West of Orkney Windfarm be selected, the investment would be allocated across a range of initiatives, including direct support for supplier development and the enhancement of ports and harbour infrastructure in Orkney, Caithness, and more generally in Scotland; a Supply Chain and Infrastructure Investment Fund to enhance the capabilities and competitiveness of key suppliers; and a targeted local skills development programme.
This investment will be made during the initial phase of development, before the final investment decision is taken. It will be funded by GBP 105 million of direct commitments from the partners supplemented up to GBP 140 million by a matched funding from third parties raised by the partners.
”The decision to commit £140m in early investment to support the local supply chain demonstrates our commitment to the region, its industry and its people. This investment will ensure that Orkney, Caithness and the Scottish supply chain benefit from our West of Orkney Windfarm project from the start. It will support essential infrastructure to help attract more green energy projects and jobs,” Pouyanné said.
These initiatives will help the consortium reach its ambitions to deliver up to half of the project’s content in Scotland over its lifetime through collaboration across industry, with a commitment to 60 per cent overall in the UK.
On successful award, the consortium will undertake detailed consultation with the local communities of Orkney and Caithness to establish a community benefit programme.
”Our business has a proud Scottish heritage, and we are focused on delivering a wind project that maximises the economic opportunity for Scotland. This unique early-stage investment will play a significant role in growing the local supply chain – and should help ensure a more inclusive energy transition around Orkney and Caithness,” said Mark Dooley, Global Head of Green Investment Group.
This investment announcement follows the consortium’s decision to develop a large-scale green hydrogen facility on the island of Flotta in Orkney. The proposed Flotta Hydrogen Hub would be powered by the renewable electricity generated by the West of Orkney wind farm.
”We have been working together with our supply chain alignment partners, and wider interested parties, for some time, to build a mutual understanding between their growth plans and the needs of our project. This has allowed us to develop targeted investment plans that can be triggered on site award and further reinforced through our supply chain investment fund as time goes on. This is not a ‘business as usual’ approach, it is instead a commitment from day one to ensuring that the West of Orkney Windfarm delivers for the Scottish economy,” said Mike Hay, Director of RIDG.