Scotland reaches £165m in offshore wind investment

Scotland's offshore wind developers have invested £165m in the country's economy to date, industry figures will reveal today.

The survey conducted by trade body Scottish Renewables revealed £65m of investment came in 2012 alone. The investment represents all contracts awarded by developers with Scottish companies in advance of any consents being awarded to their projects and mostly consists of environmental surveys, technical engineering surveys, and project demonstration.

Major international companies including Mitsubishi, Technip, Samsung, and AREVA are all looking to base operations in Scotland, offering huge growth potential for home-grown companies such as NGenTec, Wind Towers, and BiFab, Scottish Renewables said.

In addition, it calculates projects representing more than 4GW of potential installed capacity entered the planning system last year, enough to power around three million homes.

"This level of investment, made in advance of their projects gaining consents, shows the considerable level of confidence developers have in Scotland's offshore wind sector," said Lindsay Leask, senior policy manager for offshore renewables at Scottish Renewables.

"Most of this current investment has been made in research. However, this flow of private finance is also generating huge opportunities for the supply chain, and once consents for projects are granted this will both motivate new entrants and strengthen those existing companies who are already reaping the benefit of diversifying into this emerging sector."

The news comes as installation of wind turbines at RWE npower renewables' Gwynt y Môr offshore wind farm in North Wales is poised to get underway.

Source: www.businessgreen.com