Coast is clear for Peel to develop offshore future

Richard Goffin, Port Director for Great Yarmouth and London Medway discusses why Peel Ports is in pole position to help develop the next phase of offshore wind development on the UK’s east and west coasts.

As managers of the seabed around England, Wales and Northern Ireland, The Crown Estate is working with the offshore wind sector and stakeholders to consider making new seabed rights available for offshore wind.

Following the initial announcement of the potential new leasing round in November 2017, The Crown Estate has sought views on its future approach. This feedback has helped it refine proposals for new offshore wind leasing round – known as Round 4.

In October 2018, they announced that eight sites, representing 3.4GW of new capacity have satisfied the application criteria, with the Port of Liverpool and Great Yarmouth in a prime position to support several of these.

Both ports have exceedingly strong track records working with the renewables sector and hold the necessary capabilities to play a vital role in supporting the growth of off-shore wind on both the east and west coast of England. Because of the ongoing investments being made at both ports, we are in a unique position to be able to support the Crown Estate as it prepares itself for the next phase of the UK’s offshore wind development.

Great things happening on the east coast

Meanwhile on the East Coast Peel Ports Great Yarmouth is at the epicentre of the UK’s off-shore energy sector. With over 50 years’ experience in the Oil, Gas and Decommissioning Sector, we have seen a large increase of customers  working in offshore renewables.

Great Yarmouth is uniquely placed for capture of the significant growth opportunities in the UK energy sector as it is the closest deep-water port to the Southern North Sea market and offers a favourable environment for offshore wind production.

Since taking ownership of the port in 2015, Peel Ports has put into place ambitious growth and diversification plans. These plans combine our experience and understanding in delivering complex end-to-end supply chain solutions for customers, alongside Great Yarmouth’s market position, supporting diversification into growth sectors such as the energy and biomass markets.

In the off-shore wind sector our unique proposition means we have secured developers such as Vattenfall to base their O&M Site in Great Yarmouth for their Vanguard and Boreas Wind Farm Projects. 

With our Outer Harbour deep water facility (10m CD) we are capable of handling large wind components for construction, assembly, installation and decommissioning.  With our Inner Harbour (6m CD) we can accommodate large CTV and SOV vessels, making Great Yarmouth a fully holistic Port for the offshore energy industry.

Great Yarmouth Port has invested £12million  to upgrade the outer harbour, strengthening the quay and storage areas, installing a heavy lift pad, crane pad and RoRo Ramp.  We have plans to further develop the Port by investing to create 350m of extra berthing space and approximately 100,000m2 of additional storage land.  Other investments include a new Liebherr LHM280 crane, with a lifting capacity of 84 tonnes, to enable us to handle significantly larger volumes of bulk and unitised cargo, enabling us to harness potential growth opportunities, not just in renewables, but in the general bulks, RoRo and agri-bulks sectors.

Winds of change at Liverpool

Over the past few years, we have seen particular increase in cargo destined for use at both on and offshore wind farms off the west coast of the UK, the Irish Sea and beyond.

In the past two years alone, we’ve acted as trusted logistics partner to five on and offshore projects on the west coast, capable of producing a total of 500MW of electricity – enough to power 400,000 homes.

This increase comes down to Peel Ports’ unique wind farm offering in the UK, which combines the strengths of our port infrastructure, our land, facilities, and partnerships to offer an holistic logistics solution for berthing, storage, supply, operations and maintenance.

At the Port of Liverpool, we have over 50 working berths, with the potential for in-river quayside storage adjacent to the port, allowing large jack up vessels to come and go in most sea states.

Secure warehouse space and surrounding land is also immediately available and can accommodate delicate and expensive turbine blades. What’s more, the warehouse can be modified or temporary facilities can be erected on the land, limiting potential downtime and cost overruns of any potential projects.

Liverpool is renowned for its multi modal connectivity – whether that’s ocean connections, road, rail, inland waterways or air. When you add this to the agglomeration of marine services available locally and throughout our ports on both the east and west coasts, our offer is a compelling one which we’d love to share with more offshore operators.

This combination of existing expertise and the capability fulfilled by our strategically placed network of ports is already being enjoyed by a number of offshore renewable firms. This makes Peel Ports an ideally placed partner for the next phase the UK’s offshore development. We look forward to reviewing the results of Round 4 and working closely with partners to make ambitions becomes reality and helping deliver the 30GW target by 2030.

For more information on Peel Ports offshore services please click HERE

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