New part­ner­ship aims to cre­ate off­shore wind jobs

● Hopes for 75% in­crease with build­ing of hundreds of new tur­bines

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire) - - BUSINESS - BY DAVID MCPHEE

A new part­ner­ship be­tween gov­ern­ment and in­dus­try aims to cre­ate a jobs boom in Scot­tish off­shore wind pro­duc­tion over the next 10 years.

It is hoped the Scot­tish Off­shore Wind En­ergy Coun­cil, launched yes­ter­day, can grow job num­bers in the sec­tor by 75% by build­ing hundreds more tur­bines in the North Sea.

The am­bi­tion is to in­crease jobs in the in­dus­try to more than 6,000, from a cur­rent fig­ure of around 1,900.

Helped by a string of huge projects cur­rently look­ing for acreage off the north-east coast, the new coun­cil will try to grow Scot­land’s op­er­a­tional off­shore wind ca­pac­ity from 1 gi­gawatt (GW) to 8GW – the equiv­a­lent of 5.2 mil­lion house­holds – by 2030.

The coun­cil is co-chaired by Scot­tish En­ergy Min­is­ter Paul Wheel­house and SSE Re­new­ables’ head of projects in off­shore de­vel­op­ment Brian Mc­Far­lane.

Mr Wheel­house said off­shore wind had “enor­mous po­ten­tial” to de­car­bonise the en­ergy in­dus­try and “gen­er­ate eco­nomic value” for Scot­land.

He added: “The Scot­tish Off­shore Wind En­ergy Coun­cil has been created to en­sure xthxxax­txxaxl­lxxtx­hx­oxsx­exxixnxvxx­oxlxvx­exd xaxrx­exxpx­uxlxlx­inxxgxxtox­xgx­ex­tx­hx­exrxxtxo xdx­exlx­ixvx­exrxxoxnxx­xbx­oxlxdxxpxx­laxxnxs xtoxxcxrx­ex­ax­tx­exxaxxcx­oxmxxpx­ex­tx­ix­tx­ivxex, cx­oxxmxmxxex­rx­cially-at­trac­tive off­shore wind sec­tor in Scot­land which can de­liver both do­mes­ti­cally and in the global off­shore wind mar­ket, with op­por­tu­ni­ties to de­velop a glob­al­ly­compet­i­tive sup­ply chain for fixed foun­da­tion and float­ing wind tech­nolo­gies.

“The broad na­ture of the group, in­clud­ing as it does rep­re­sen­ta­tives from both the public and pri­vate sec­tors, and the skills and ex­pe­ri­ence on which it can draw give Scot­land the very best chance of suc­cess in off­shore wind as these multi-bil­lion-pound re­new­able en­ergy projects build out in our wa­ters.”

In­dus­try trade body Scot­tish Re­new­ables said the new coun­cil’s am­bi­tions were in line with those of the Off­shore Wind Sec­tor Deal, un­veiled in March, when UK En­ergy Min­is­ter Claire Perry pledged a £250 mil­lion in­vest­ment.

WORK­ING TO­GETHER: The Scot­tish Off­shore Wind En­ergy Coun­cil aims to in­crease jobs in the in­dus­try to more than 6,000

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