Floating wind farms will make UK’s oil production 'cleanest in world' and generate thousands of jobs

Infrastructure developer Cerulean Winds is to bid for four seabed lease sites in an effort to make the UK’s oil and gas production “the cleanest in the world” and generate thousands of jobs.

The firm said its technology would remove more emissions quickly, keep costs lower for platform operators and “provide the anchor” for large-scale North-South offshore transmission.

The floating offshore wind and green energy proposal for Crown Estate Scotland’s Innovation and Targeted Oil and Gas leasing round (INTOG) includes four 1.5-gigawatt sites providing floating wind power.

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Cerulean Winds, with its selected delivery partner NOV, has been engaging the supply chain for more than 18 months. The steel floating bases would constitute hundreds of thousands of tonnes of steel, which unlike cement fixtures, can be floated out from shore.

The development could create some 10,000 jobs, many of which would be high value manufacturing jobs in Scotland as a new generation of automated and hi-tech fabrication and assembly is established.

Dan Jackson, founding director of Cerulean Winds said: “We have a big, bold bid, which is ready to go on scaling the green economy, creating thousands of jobs and making Scotland’s oil and gas production the cleanest in the world.

“The scale we are proposing makes the project economics appealing for providing affordable green power to the platforms to replace gas and diesel generation through a combination of green electrons from wind and molecules from hydrogen.

“We are absolutely committed to the local supply chain benefitting from this development and far surpassing local content targets. Our base structure design can be floated in very shallow water depths suitable for the UK, unlike alternative cement floating wind structures which require 90 metres so can’t be built here.”

Offshore wind farm developments are becoming an increasingly common sight.

The team is led by serial entrepreneurs Jackson and Mark Dixon, who have more than 25 years’ experience working together on large-scale offshore infrastructure developments in the energy industry.

A consortium of contractors is said to be in place as well as a number of industrial and financial partners which have “robustly engaged” the financial markets.

Jackson added: “There is a lot of concern about rising energy prices and energy security. Wind and green energy at this scale are a big part of the solution. We are engaging with oil and gas operators and can see the appetite is there to get behind cleaning up production, and we can deliver in a way that minimises disruption.

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“Whilst smaller piecemeal wind developments are useful for testing concepts or innovations, it will take a UK wide solution to remove the emissions at the pace required to hit the net zero targets governments.

“Furthermore, our large scale scheme lowers the LCOE – cost of the power – which is highly attractive to the operators.”

Jackson and Dixon have extensive experience in the offshore sector including establishing subsea engineering consultancy DeepSea Engineering, which was acquired by McDermott International.

DeepSea advised clients across the market from the outset of the deep water era from 2000 onwards. The consultancy was engaged with almost all the deep water projects at the time representing the different stakeholder groups.

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Giant floating wind farm and green gas scheme in Scotland could be UK's 'biggest...

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