UK: Vattenfall, ScottishPower Invest GBP 15 Million in East Anglia Region
Vattenfall and ScottishPower Renewables, joint venture partners behind the East Anglia Offshore Wind Zone, have awarded over £15m in contracts to businesses operating in East Anglia. Since 2010, 28 firms located in the region have benefited and it is estimated that this has helped support well over of 100 jobs.
In November last year the partners revealed that they had awarded contracts in East Anglia to the value of £6.65m. This latest announcement highlights an additional investment of more than £8m.
Andy Paine, East Anglia Programme Director, said: “East Anglia Offshore Wind Farm is already good news for the East Anglian economy with more than £15 million contracted with the region’s business – an investment that is supporting more than 100 jobs. It’s great to see businesses like Brown & May Marine benefit from contracts associated with the development of our first project and I’m really proud of our project’s investment in East Anglian businesses to date.”
And he added that prospects for the region’s economy could get better: “We are currently developing the first phase of the wind farm and hope for consent from the Government next year. If approved and built the scheme is expected to deliver £500 million to the region’s economy and 1,600 construction jobs in East Anglia alone. “
Peter Aldous, Member of Parliament for Waveney, said: “This announcement is very good news and illustrates the significant opportunities that the development of offshore wind farms in the North Sea offers to businesses throughout East Anglia.
“I welcome ScottishPower Renewables’ and Vattenfall’s commitment to the region and it is important that working with them, everything possible is done to ensure that local people and local businesses benefit from this. This means ensuring that the necessary investment is made in both skills and infrastructure and local businesses are in the best possible position to bid successfully for contracts.”
Contract awards have varied from modest accommodation and catering contracts to multi-million pound marine services, research and consulting contracts. These awards by Vattenfall and ScottishPower Renewables span businesses covering the whole of East Anglia, including Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex and Cambridgeshire.
One of the big winners from the contract awards has been Suffolk based firm Brown & May Marine Ltd, which has been working with Vattenfall and ScottishPower Renewables from before lease award in early 2010. Brown & May Marine support the joint venture through fisheries liaison work undertaken as part of the development process for East Anglia ONE. This includes everything from delivering workshops and meetings with local fishermen to providing crucial advice and input into key application documents for the wind farm.
In its 31 years of operation, Brown & May Marine has worked on 21 offshore wind farms providing strategic support on a wide range of development matters in the UK and across Europe. The East Anglia Offshore Wind Zone is the largest offshore wind development the firm has worked on so far. In addition, Brown & May Marine undertook the commercial fisheries and fish ecology assessments as well as the adult and juvenile fish surveys, for which UK fishing vessels were chartered.
Stephen Appleby, the Director of Brown & May Marine, said: “Brown & May Marine is delighted to be a contractor for ScottishPower Renewables and Vattenfall. About 20 staff work on this contract making it one of the most rewarding developments we are currently supporting. From our perspective, we very much look forward to continuing to support the joint venture partners and playing an important role in helping to secure consent for one of the largest offshore developments in the world.”
Vattenfall and ScottishPower Renewables first project, East Anglia ONE, a 1,200 MW development covering 300km2, entered the planning system in December 2012 and is aiming to achieve consent from the UK Government in 2014. It is anticipated that construction could begin onshore as early as 2016 with offshore construction commencing the following year. It is estimated that East Anglia ONE alone could meet the equivalent electricity needs of roughly 700,000 homes in the UK.
Press release, April 25, 2013; Image: eastangliawind