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The Humber LEP welcomes the publication of the Government’s offshore wind strategy today.

The strategy formalises and brings together the key strands of sector for the industry to strengthen theUK’s position, where there is already more wind operation than the rest of the world combined.

The Humber is well placed to create a large proportion of the 30,000 jobs linked to offshore wind expected to be create in theUK, as well as gaining a slice of the £7bn expected to be created in the economy.

The strategy should help to build confidence in the sector and in the Humber, which is progressing to create one of the world’s largest renewable energy manufacturers with its three key selling points:

  • Being closest to all three of theUK’s largest planned offshore wind farms
  • TheUK’s largest development sites adjacent to deep water ports,
  • Offering Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and their supply chains the opportunity to co-locate to make cost reductions on a major scale.

More than 200 Operations and maintenance jobs have already been created inGrimsby taking advantage of being the closest port to many of the Rounds 1, 2 and 3 offshore wind farms. This number is expected to rise to 1,000 by 2025.

Already Centrica and RES offshore have established bases on the port employing approximately 150 people and operating nearly 20 O&M vessels. E.ON is also currently constructing an Operations and Maintenance base within the Enterprise Zone at the Port which will create a further 50 jobs, with further interest from Dong Energy.

In particular the Humber LEP welcomes the proposal by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) that developers of offshore wind farms above a certain size will need  to produce a supply chain plan before a contract is given with a focus on supporting innovation and skills.

Making sure that supply chain and employees are sourced locally is a key priority for the Humber LEP and its partners across the region.

Lord Haskins, Chairman of the Humber LEP, said:

“The Government is right to recognise offshore wind as a major growth opportunity, and I hope that this industrial strategy will help the UK capture more of the economic benefit from it.  The Humber is already playing a leading role, but also has the most to gain.

 “Anything that creates further confidence in the sector in the UK and  the Humber is very welcome and the strategy that formalises the Government’s commitment to the sector will help.

 “The fact that the Deputy Prime Minister chose to launch this strategy from the Humber again underlines our potential for offshore wind and the confidence in our ability to deliver.

 “We have worked with Government to put in place incentives to support offshore wind developments around the Humber, including the Enterprise Zones and Regional Growth Fund.  The next step, through the powers we are seeking in the City Deal, will be to provide more support for local people to access the jobs created.”