Major 90-turbine offshore wind farm set to create hundreds of jobs
A global energy firm is set to move forward with plans to build and install a major 90 turbine wind farm in the coming months, which is expected to create hundreds of jobs for the region.
innogy SE has announced the timeline for its 860MW Triton Knoll Offshore Wind Farm, including the project’s turbine supply contract and the east coast UK ports which will build and service the offshore giant.
Triton Knoll is a consented offshore wind farm being developed by Innogy Renewables UK, located 20 miles off the coast of Lincolnshire and 28 miles from the coast of north Norfolk.
The project is owned by innogy (59%) and partners J-Power (25%) and to Kansai Electric Power (16%).
Triton Knoll has placed orders with turbine manufacturer MHI Vestas to provide the offshore project with 90 of its V164-9.5 MW machines, currently considered to be the most powerful on the market.
It has also been agreed that a site at Associated British Ports’ Grimsby facility will be used as the wind farm’s long term Operations and Maintenance (O&M) base. Studies estimate the O&M work has the potential to support up to 170 direct and indirect long term jobs.
MHI Vestas will establish a full-scale turbine pre-assembly operation at Able UK’s Seaton Port in Teesside, from enabling works to loadout. It is anticipated that, in total the port activity involving all partners could create around 100 new and predominately local jobs, and unlock over £16m investment in new infrastructure and equipment.
Julian Garnsey Project Director, Triton Knoll said: “This is a great moment for Triton Knoll and the UK offshore wind industry as we formally secure the means to deliver around £2billion of new UK energy infrastructure. Triton Knoll expects to deliver at least 50% of our investment with UK firms over the project’s lifecycle and at the height of construction we expect to see over 3000 people working on the project.
“We are delighted to be expanding the project’s UK footprint with MHI Vestas and these two east coast ports. The subsequent investment in Able UK’s Seaton port facility represents a great opportunity to enhance offshore wind port facilities within the Northern Powerhouse region.”
MHI Vestas will supply 90 of its most powerful world-leading turbines to the project. Turbine tower sections, blades and nacelles will be assembled at Seaton, before being loaded on to construction vessels for transport and installation at the wind farm, over 30 kilometres offshore.
MHI Vestas CEO, Philippe Kavafyan said: “With financial close now reached for Triton Knoll, the UK has again affirmed its position as the global leader in offshore wind. This means highly-skilled jobs in the local offshore wind sector.
“In providing 90 of our flagship V164-9.5 MW turbines, MHI Vestas is proud to partner with Triton Knoll to leverage our UK industrial footprint, notably our production of blades already being successfully exported, and work with Able UK to develop the Seaton facility into a full-scale, pre-assembly site for this project.”
Able UK will develop an additional 140metres of new heavy-duty quayside at the port, and invest in equipment and facilities to support delivery of Triton Knoll. It says the investment will help the port become a competitive force within the offshore sector and providing considerable opportunities for the local supply chain.
Able UK’s Executive Chairman Peter Stephenson, said : “We have enjoyed a long and constructive relationship with Triton Knoll culminating in today’s announcement – it’s a massive vote of confidence in the UK, ourselves and the Teesside supply chain. Our sustained investment means we can provide a bespoke and tailor-made solution for Triton Knoll.”