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Building a UK Offshore Wind Industry. Dr Gordon Edge Director of Policy RenewableUK. A word on who we are…. The three most important things. The Market The Market The Market. 32 GW. The UK has a healthy pipeline. 47GW of leases in total…. 20,000. Round 3.

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Building a uk offshore wind industry

Building a UK Offshore Wind Industry

Dr Gordon Edge

Director of Policy


The three most important things
The three most important things

  • The Market

  • The Market

  • The Market

The uk has a healthy pipeline

32 GW

The UK has a healthy pipeline

47GW of leases in total…




…But when are they delivered?

Wind Farm Capacity (MW)



6.4 GW


~ 1 – 2 GW












Near term delivery quite clear
Near term delivery quite clear

Source: UK Offshore Wind: Staying on Track, report by Garrad Hassan for BWEA, June 2009

A more realistic view
A more realistic view?

Crown Estate

20% attrition, some projects delayed by 1 year

30% attrition, most projects delayed by 2 years

  • Installed in 2020:

  • High: 45GW; Medium: 24GW; Low: 14GW

What might this mean for turbine supply
What might this mean for turbine supply?

  • Final R2 projects and early STW projects using <4 MW turbines

  • Use of <4 MW expected on early R3 phases where water depths allow

  • From 2017, 5-6 MW turbines expected to be most common


  • Funds from Government

    • Offshore Wind Demonstration calls have given out £18m to Siemens, Vestas, Clipper, Artemis, Mitsubishi, Burntisland Fabrications and Teeside Alliance Group to fund introduction of advanced technology and manufacturing

      • Third call just closed

    • Increasing amounts available from Regional Development Agencies

    • More funds controlled by DECC and BIS

  • Focus on infrastructure

    • Ports Prospectus has excited interest

    • ‘Ports competition’ announced in Budget

      • Bidding open soon for £60m of money available to spend on upgrading port facilities and land for manufacturing

      • Bids from landowners must have manufacturer(s) attached

Leading to turbine success
…leading to turbine success…

  • Clipper now building blade factory for 75m blades

  • Mitsubishi to invest £100m in R&D facility for new 6MW turbine

  • GE and Siemens to base offshore manufacturing in UK as result of the ports competition

  • Others to follow?

And success down the supply chain
…and success down the supply chain

  • New facilities for manufacture of towers and foundations to be built

    • BiFab, TAG, Welcon, Mabey Bridge

  • JDR Cables hopefully first of a number of cable manufacturing facilities

  • Opportunities in support vessels being exploited by Alnmaritec

More to be done demand
More to be done – demand

  • Ensuring that there is a strong market is the sine qua non for creating a thriving industry

  • This requires action in many areas:

    • Securing confidence in the market: Market support; clarity on future build targets

      • Avoiding the ‘R2 gap’

      • National Renewable Energy Action Plan objective is key

      • ‘Round Four’ likely to be necessary by middle of this decade

    • Securing finance for both projects and companies: ‘Green Investment Bank’ and EIB; Bringing in new money – institutional investors

    • Securing grid connections: Making OFTO work at reasonable cost

More to be done supply
More to be done – supply

  • The market alone is not enough

  • Direct stimulation of supply is necessary:

    • Further assistance for companies entering the UK supply chain

    • Further grants to ensure roll-out of new technology

    • Tax breaks and enhanced grants, possibly focused on ‘Low Carbon Enterprise Zones’

    • Coordination of effort

  • Action on supply of skilled workers

    • Promotion of ‘STEM’ subjects to young people and highlighting careers in renewables

    • Bringing in workers with transferable skills

    • Avoiding ‘poaching’ by offshore oil and gas

More to be done technology
More to be done – technology

  • Need to establish a more coherent national RD&D programme

    • Good work going on: e.g. Carbon Trust Offshore Wind Accelerator; Energy Technologies Institute; Technology Strategy Board; Narec facilities

    • But needs to be better coordinated

    • Test sites needed urgently – particularly onshore sites for offshore turbines

    • More funding will be needed, especially for demonstrating new foundation and turbine technology

In conclusion
In conclusion…

  • The UK is setting out its stall for an offshore wind industry…

  • And will soon be fully open for business

  • Join us in building in thriving industry for the UK and for the wider European market