Vattenfall has signed leases totalling 24 years with Aberdeen Harbour Board, becoming the first offshore wind operator to invest long term in the port’s facilities.
The company is set to establish its construction team’s base within the Regent Centre by next month and also move into a warehouse unit at Commercial Quay. The facilities will support the construction, commissioning, operation and maintenance (O&M), and eventual decommissioning phases of Vattenfall’s more than £300million European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre (EOWDC) off the Aberdeen coast.
A team of up to 10 personnel, including skilled offshore wind technicians, will be based at the facilities during the lifetime of the project. The warehouse will undergo a substantial retrofit and the company anticipates moving into the new facilities within Q2 of 2017.
Adam Ezzamel, project director for the EOWDC at Vattenfall, said: “Establishing a long-term centre of operations in Aberdeen has been fundamental to our project plans. We are pleased to have found a suitable location so near to the wind farm with the support of Aberdeen Harbour Board.
“Aberdeen Harbour is a natural fit for our operations while the EOWDC is a flagship project for the region and its Energetica corridor. As a hub of innovation, the project will reinforce the North-east’s global energy status by leading the industry drive towards generating clean and competitive wind energy power.”
Chief executive at Aberdeen Harbour Board, Colin Parker, said: “Whilst Aberdeen Harbour has supported both onshore and offshore renewables projects many times in the past, we very much welcome this long-term commitment to the port by Vattenfall. We believe that our location and modern facilities are ideal to support this work, and this agreement typifies our continued strategy for diversification of harbour activity, to the benefit of the Region.
Turbine supplier, MHI Vestas Offshore wind, will provide a full service agreement for at least the first five years of operations, working together with Vattenfall from the O&M base at Aberdeen Harbour.
Flemming Ougaard, chief operating officer, operations at MHI Vestas Offshore Wind, said: “Vattenfall’s long term commitment to Aberdeen Harbour provides both our construction and operation and maintenance teams with a stable base for the project. The port facilities are first class and provide great access to the site.”
Aberdeen City Council’s Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group (AREG) has been a long-term partner of the EOWDC.
Chair of AREG and Aberdeen City Councillor, Jean Morrison, said: “We welcome that Vattenfall is to be the first offshore wind operator to invest long term in Aberdeen Harbour’s facilities, as it is a firm commitment to the city and its role as the Energy Capital of Europe.
“The EOWDC is an important part of the city’s future of diversifying our energy industry, accessing new international markets, reducing the cost of offshore wind projects, and creating and safeguarding jobs. Aberdeen City Council, through AREG, welcomes Vattenfall’s commitment to the future of Aberdeen and our ambitions for our energy industry.”
The EOWDC is Scotland’s largest offshore wind test and demonstration facility. It is being developed by Vattenfall-owned Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm Limited. Construction onshore of the innovative 92.4MW, 11-turbine offshore wind scheme started last month with first power expected to generate in summer 2018.
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The European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre is also known as Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm.