The government today announced a new boost to the UK’s offshore wind industry, confirming that more than £ 260million in investment is to be mobilized to support new manufacturing capacity in the Humber area.
The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy announced this morning that Siemens Gamesa and GRI Renewable Industries will receive a grant from the government’s £ 160million Offshore Wind Investment Support Program , launched at the end of last year as part of the Prime Minister’s 10 point program. Plan for a green industrial revolution.
The grants have unlocked a total of £ 260million in public and private funding, which is expected to create and support more than 1,340 jobs in the Humber region, the government said.
Siemens Gamesa to invest £ 186million to expand its blade manufacturing site near Hull, creating and safeguarding up to 1,080 direct jobs, while enabling the company to produce the next generation of wind turbines and offshore blades over 100 meters long.
Meanwhile, GRI Renewable Industries became the second company to confirm plans to build facilities at Able Marine Energy Park in Hull, with £ 78million investment in a new offshore wind tower plant expected to create up to 260 direct jobs.
The double investment announcements follow the recent confirmation of more than £ 180million of private sector investment from offshore windmakers SeAH Wind Ltd and Smulders Projects UK in the Humber and Newcastle upon Tyne on the month latest, as well as GE Renewable Energy’s high-profile plans for a large new manufacturing facility in the Northeast.
The increase in investment was also supported by the government’s planned investment of £ 95million to create two new dedicated offshore wind ports on the Humber and Teesside.
The latest announcements were welcomed by Prime Minister Boris Johnson. “The Humber region epitomizes the UK’s Green Industrial Revolution, with new investments in the development of the next generation of wind turbines that are expected to create new jobs, export opportunities and clean energy throughout the region. country, ”he said. “With less than 100 days of the COP26 climate summit, we must see more countries adopt new technologies, build green industries and phase out coal-fired energy for a sustainable future.”
Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said the investment provided further proof that the northeast is now firmly established as a global hub for the growing global offshore wind industry. “With its proximity to some of the world’s largest offshore wind farms and a strong skills base, the Humber region is vitally important to the growth of the UK offshore wind industry and is at the heart of our green recovery” , did he declare. “Our announcement, supported by private investment, will give a boost to this important industrial center, creating and supporting thousands of good quality jobs in the region while ensuring that it is at the forefront of the development of the next generation of offshore wind turbines. “
The new manufacturing capacity is expected to help meet growing demand for new offshore wind farms in the North Sea and beyond, as the UK and other northern European countries move quickly to take advantage of falling wind energy costs and expanding their offshore wind fleets.
Siemens Gamesa’s offshore business unit CEO Marc Becker said the new investment would help strengthen the company’s position as a leading player in a growing market. “Siemens Gamesa continues to be the leading supplier of offshore wind technology to the world’s largest offshore wind market, the UK,” he said. “Through safe, efficient and reliable manufacturing, more than 1,500 Hull blades have been delivered to customers around the world. We look forward to increasing this capacity in the future.
GRI Chairman and CEO Jon Riberas said the company was “proud to be part of this major project to power UK homes and communities with wind energy towards sustainability and carbon neutrality”.
The news was also well received by the trade body RenewableUK, which argued that the investment was further proof of the huge role the offshore wind sector can play in the UK’s dynamism.
“These two key announcements are a huge boost for the Humber region and provide further proof that the UK’s advanced offshore wind supply chain is growing at a tremendous rate, creating job opportunities in the UK. coastal communities that need to be improved, ”said the director general. Dan McGrail. “This is what Boris Johnson’s Green Industrial Revolution looks like in action and the government is fully supporting offshore wind manufacturing in the UK.
Today’s news comes as the UN issues a landmark report warning the world must urgently accelerate and accelerate action on climate change. To achieve this, the renewable energy industry is working with the government to maximize the number of jobs in our thriving clean energy sector, including the export of our cutting-edge products and services around the world, as the UK is a global leader in energy technology. clean energy. “
The news follows calls from the offshore wind industry for the government to ease barriers to planning and speed up auctions for clean energy contracts to further accelerate the development of the supporting industry. demanding UK emissions targets.