UK Gov't Joins Floating Wind Development Center

September 28, 2021

Photograph: TetraSpar Demonstrator ApS. Credit: Stiesdal
Photograph: TetraSpar Demonstrator ApS. Credit: Stiesdal

The UK government has joined the Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult’s Floating Offshore Wind Centre of Excellence (FOWC0E) as a strategic partner, through its Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

The center's mission is to accelerate the growth and commercialization of the floating offshore wind sector.

BEIS announced it will join 15 leading offshore wind developers, including CIP, EDF, Equinor, ESB, Mainstream Renewable Power, Northland Power, OceanWinds, Offshore Wind Power Limited (GIG/RIDG), RWE, Scottish Power Renewables, SSE Renewables, Shell, Total Energies, and newest members Ørsted and BP, in helping set the groundwork to realizing the economic and environmental benefits the floating offshore wind sector will bring to the UK and facilitating the delivery of a cost-effective Net-Zero.

According to ORE Catapult, the center's outputs provide an evidence base for key strategic and policy decisions relating to the development of floating offshore wind, with a portfolio of 26 projects in delivery or already delivered and approximately £3.5m of funding committed by partners to date. BEIS’s £2m contribution forms part of the £1bn Net Zero Innovation Portfolio.

The activities and projects focus on reducing the cost of energy from floating wind, accelerating the build-out of floating wind farms, creating opportunities for the UK supply chain, and driving innovations in manufacturing, installation and operations and maintenance, ORE Catapult said.

 A Strategic Work Plan developed with the partners will guide activity over the coming years and deliver real impact in several key areas, including dynamic cable systems, mooring and anchoring systems, environmental interaction and supply chain data, development and project delivery,.
Ralph Torr, ORE Catapult’s Programme Manager for the FOWCoE, said: “The development of a strong, indigenous floating wind industry is essential if the UK is to meet its Net Zero targets by 2050, and our Floating Offshore Wind Centre of Excellence, further strengthened by our new members, is spearheading the growth of this nascent sector.

“The Centre’s work to date underlines how vital continued support and investment is to the development of the sector. We need long-term capacity targets for 2040 and beyond to emphasise the scale of the opportunity and unlock the public and private investment required to realise the huge societal, economic and environmental benefits floating wind can offer.

“We look forward to working with our new and existing members to further these goals.”



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