Up to 3,000 jobs are to be created following ScottishPower Renewables’ decision to proceed with East Anglia ONE, a 714MW wind farm to be built 26 miles off the Suffolk coast.
As well as creating jobs during construction, East Anglia ONE will spend at least half of the total £2.5bn investment in the UK supply chain.
The company, which aims to have the wind farm operational by 2020, believes East Anglia ONE will be the most cost efficient offshore wind farm ever to confirm construction after it secured a price of £119MWh. The project will bring also bring new investment to the East Anglian economy, including a £25m deal with the Port of Lowestoft to be the home of the wind farm for 30-plus years.
Charlie Jordan, ScottishPower Renewables East Anglia ONE project director, said: “East Anglia has some of the best conditions anywhere in the world for the development of offshore wind, and we are fully committed to the region, with future developments already in the pipeline.
“ScottishPower Renewables is leading the way with its approach of actively working towards a target of at least 50% UK supply chain content over the lifetime of the East Anglia ONE project. We have already worked with a wide range of companies across East Anglia and we look forward to working with many more.”
Over the last year ScottishPower Renewables says it has held supply chain events across the region, and the company’s Skills Strategy for East Anglia ONE has now been agreed with local councils across Suffolk, with the aim to develop a local skilled workforce who can access future employment opportunities within the offshore wind industry.
This will include funding student places on technician and college courses in the local area and launching a STEM ambassador programme.
Construction is planned to commence in 2017, with the first turbines of 102 installed by 2019.