The East of England
The world’s largest market for offshore wind
Norfolk and Suffolk are at the centre of the world’s largest market for offshore wind. There’s around £30bn of planned investment in new energy projects in the region by 2020. The world’s largest offshore wind farm, London Array, is nearing completion. Then there will be a thousand-plus wind turbines in another major project: the East Anglia Offshore Windfarm. It’s huge; in just one geographic area it’s one and a half times the size of Suffolk. We’re looking at a market that’s tens of thousands of offshore wind turbines, and then there’s the foundations, cables, substations, vessels and longer term asset management, operations and maintenance opportunities.
Offshore oil and gas is still big business in the region too, with more than £44bn of new investment in gas exploration, production and storage projects across the UK. There are plans for CO2 storage in the Southern North Sea; and onshore there are the nuclear power station developments. Nowhere in the UK has a broader energy mix or provides as much business potential as Norfolk and Suffolk. Nowhere offers more opportunities for diversification across the energy and engineering sectors than East Anglia.
It’s well worth remembering that it's not just the specialist energy sector companies who stand to benefit. They'll need a supply chain of local companies providing manufacturing, design, engineering, operations and maintenance capabilities. And they'll need a wider supply chain made of a huge range of supporting services, from financial and legal advice to catering. These companies will need support as they grow to meet the business demand, and that’s where OrbisEnergy can help to develop the full value chain.
A long-term business opportunity that’s global
While there are significant business prospects for construction and installation, the long-term opportunities will be around operations, maintenance and asset management of the windfarms; that’s the 20 to 25 year business after a windfarm is installed. The region is ideally positioned for longer term operations and maintenance, building on many years’ experience of the oil and gas industry off the East Anglian coast.
This is not just a local opportunity. It is a global business; there are global opportunities for companies based in our region. We’re here to help them to maximise their growth potential, with our partners EEEGR (East of England Energy Group) and New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership, supported by the local authorities across Suffolk and Norfolk. It’s our ambition to drive growth and to bring wealth and job creation opportunities to the region for the next twenty years; and we can also service a global market from Suffolk. We’re already starting to realise that ambition.