Scotland's port of Nigg to host GBP 110m-plus offshore wind tower factory
Planned NOW factory. Image by Global Energy Group
The port of Nigg in Scotland will become home to the UK’s largest offshore wind tower factory, the port’s owner, Scottish-based energy services company Global Energy Group (GEG), said on Friday.
GEG has agreed terms with Spanish offshore wind tower manufacturer Haizea Wind Group to build an offshore wind tubular rolling facility at the Scottish port to supply towers and other large tubular components to the UK and global offshore fixed and floating wind industry.
The initiative, representing an investment of about GBP 110 million (USD 147m/EUR 129m) to GBP 120 million, is supported by SSE Renewables, Sequoia Economic Infrastructure Income Fund and Mainstream Renewable Power. SSE Renewables and Mainstream will provide GBP 15 million and GBP 5 million in debt, respectively. The factory is also expected to get funding support from the Scottish and UK governments.
“In addition to the debt funding, SSE also looks forward to fulfilling its role as a strategic backer and placing orders with the factory to meet our growing offshore wind pipeline in the near future,” said SSE chief executive Alistair Phillips-Davies.
“SSE is in a unique position with projects of scale, such as Dogger Bank and Berwick Bank, to create sustainable, long-term supply chain opportunities such as at Nigg and the new GE blade factory in Teesside,” he added.
If financial close is reached by the end of the year, construction of the new facility could start in January 2022, with production expected to begin in 2023.
The Nigg Offshore Wind (NOW) factory will have the capacity to produce up to 135 towers per year, as well as other structures such as transition pieces, suction buckets and bespoke tubular components. It will be capable of rolling steel plate to make towers more than 1,000 tonnes in weight.
GEG chief executive Tim Cornelius commented that the facility will allow offshore wind developers to achieve local content targets.
The factory is expected to create more than 400 long-term direct jobs and more than 1,000 indirect jobs in the Scottish and UK supply chain.