Port of Tyne – The World’s Largest Offshore Wind Farm
Norwegian energy company Equinor and UK renewable energy company SSE Renewables announced Port of Tyne as the location for their joint venture, Dogger Bank, which is set to be the world’s largest offshore wind farm.
SSE Renewables began construction on Dogger Bank in January 2020, with the site expected to be operational for a maximum of 25 years upon completion.
Equinor is responsible for developing the project’s operations and maintenance system, central to which is the construction of a multimillion-pound facility. Including both offices and a warehouse, this facility will serve as an onshore base for the Equinor team, ensuring the efficient operation of Dogger Bank.
Overall, Dogger Bank will be made up of three phases: Dogger Bank A, Dogger Bank B, Dogger Bank C and will be located more than 130km from the Yorkshire Coast. When fully operational, each section of this project will have an installed capacity of 1.2 GW, providing renewable electricity to 1.5 million UK homes. Altogether, Dogger Bank will have the potential to provide 5% of the UK’s estimated electricity generation.
Equinor and SSE Renewables expect the first phase, Dogger A, to be fully operational and producing renewable electricity in 2023.
The wind turbines will be installed on monopile foundations and the transmission system will be High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) due to long distance to a grid connection point.
Senior Vice President for Equinor’s North Sea New Energy Solutions and Chair of Renewable UK, Stephen Bull, said:
“The UK government has legislated to cut carbon emissions to net-zero by 2050. Major scale renewable energy projects like Dogger Bank ensures Britain’s leadership as the #1 offshore wind nation. Moreover, the project brings new investment to the UK, at a challenging time for us all, and secures over 200 jobs in the region as well as new opportunities in a future-fit growth sector.”
Dogger Bank: Environment and Economy Initiatives
Not only will Dogger Bank be good for the environment, but it will also be beneficial to the UK economy as Equinor and SSE Renewables expect Dogger Bank to create over 200 jobs as well as opportunities for UK companies at all levels of the supply chain.
Paul Cooley, SSE Renewables Director of Capital Projects, said:
“The Operations and Maintenance base will bring significant socio-economic benefits to the local area during construction and throughout the projects lifetime, as we have seen on our previous offshore wind projects including Beatrice.”
As well as onshore office teams to support operations from land, this wind farm project will create various offshore jobs including for maintenance technicians. The main recruitment process will start early 2022 and will continue as the project progresses up to completion.
Equinor and SSE Renewables want to use UK companies for their supply chain to enable UK companies to be a part of this ground-breaking project, whether directly or through one of the project’s Tier One and Two suppliers. To help UK companies get involved an online procurement portal is already available.
Matt Beeton, Chief Executive Officer of the Port of Tyne, is excited for what this innovative project will bring to Port of Tyne in terms of employment opportunities, local business engagement and how this project will benefit Port of Tyne’s own low carbon initiatives.
Beeton said, “The Port recently launched its ‘Tyne 2050’ plan with a vision to become one of the most environmentally sustainable ports in the UK by 2030. Offshore wind is a key component of that strategy and this announcement is a huge step towards developing a cleaner future for the Port, the region and for industry in the North East.”
“We’re very excited to start working with Equinor and SSE Renewables to make this base a success and we’re looking forward to playing our part in the world’s largest offshore wind farm.”
Equinor and SSE Renewables estimate Dogger Bank wind farm to attract a total capital investment of approximately GBP 9 billion between 2020 and 2026.