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MARKET OPPORTUNITIES


FEATURE SPONSOR


A PERFECT STORM


The East of England Energy Zone which includes the ports of Great Yarmouth, Lowestoft and Wells is poised to take a leading role in the enormous expansion of the European offshore wind sector over the next 10-15 years


A ‘perfect storm’ of rapidly falling costs and new technology coming to market has heralded increased confidence from both governments and the industry. The East of England Energy Zone ports are ideally located with the experience and infrastructure to support new pan- European manufacturing, construction and maintenance facilities.


OPPORTUNITY


“The East of England is the most relevant place in global offshore wind. It is up to us all to make the most of that opportunity,” voiced Jonathan Cole, Managing Director, Iberdrola Renewables Offshore recently. Two years ago, the massive East Anglia One windfarm (off the Norfolk/ Suffolk coast) owned by Scottish Power Renewables won the first UK Contract for Difference auction with a bid of £119 per MW hour. In the past six months the industry has seen prices fall in Dutch and Danish auctions culminating in March 2017 with EnBW and DONG winning in recent German auctions with subsidy-free bids. The cost of offshore wind has not just beaten new nuclear but is reaching par with gas.


NORTH SEA DEVELOPMENT


There are now calls for governments to bring forward large-scale new areas for development in the North Sea. Shell, rapidly diversifying into offshore wind, has called on the Dutch Government to bring forward a further 30 GW in the 2020s. While the target may be optimistic it nevertheless signals two things; confidence in the future of offshore wind in the North Sea and the growing commitment of major multinationals.


THE COST OF OFFSHORE WIND HAS NOT JUST BEATEN NEW NUCLEAR BUT IS REACHING PAR WITH GAS


REDUCING COSTS


The drive to reduce costs is fuelling investment in new technology. The major turbine manufacturers are bringing forward large scale turbines with 10MW + machines expected to be announced soon and 12/13MW + not far off.


In turn this is likely to stimulate new manufacturing investment not just in new turbines but in longer blades, new foundation designs and taller towers.


LOCAL CONTENT


It is clear the UK Government expects to see high levels of ‘local content’ but new manufacturing facilities in Great Yarmouth or Lowestoft will also be ideally located to support developments across the Southern North Sea.


The East of England ports are


preparing for new investment with new quays in planning, new business parks near deepwater and a concerted effort to work with employers to deliver the right skills. There is a workforce of 330,000 within 45 minutes (drivetime) of Great Yarmouth and Lowestoft.


IDEAL LOCATION


The East of England Energy Zone ports are ideally placed to benefit from the expected growth as most of the developments already consented are in the Southern North Sea, off the coasts of Belgium, The Netherlands, Germany and the East of England.


36


www.windenergynetwork.co.uk


SPOTLIGHT ON EAST OF ENGLAND


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