Remaining at the forefront of floating wind development

Scott Hamilton

Scott Hamilton

Renewables Division Manager

Floating offshore wind is understandably of significant interest to developers and government and it is recognised we are going to have to accelerate the number of projects and investment in infrastructure, ports and the supply chain to reach the Scottish Government’s ambitious target of 8-11GW of offshore wind energy by 2030  and striving for Net Zero by 2045 with strong Scottish content.

This week’s announcement that Subsea 7 and Simply Blue Energy are developing the Salamander floating wind project, off Peterhead in the North East of Scotland, is a major step forward for the industry. We have supported Salamander from the inception stage and will continue to work with Simply Blue Energy to develop the concept in readiness for acquiring a lease, in due course from Crown Estate Scotland.

Xodus has been at the forefront of floating offshore wind from the very beginning. As lead consultant in the environmental impact assessment (EIA) for Equinor’s Hywind project, we played a pivotal role in the creation of the environmental statement for the world’s first floating wind project.

From the first prototype to now having demonstrator projects operational, floating wind has come a long way. However, we are now in a situation where we need a ‘stepping stone’ project such as Salamander to bridge the gap between the tens of MWs projects that are currently operational and the future GW-sized developments. The aim of this project is to push the supply chain forward, reduce floating technology risks and achieve cost reductions.

The sector is still in its infancy and it needs to walk before it can run so we work on supporting the development of the local supply chain so that it can maximise the benefits of future floating developments. This is vitally important for Scotland and the UK as previous projects have struggled to yield the expected local supply chain content, with a significant portion of the work outsourced internationally.

If this is not addressed, then we will be in the same situation in the 2030s. This was a real motivation for us bringing this opportunity to life – and we were fortunate to find the right partner in Simply Blue Energy, who with two projects in the Celtic Sea, were already pioneering stepping stone projects in the UK.

Read the full press release about the Salamander Floating Windfarm Project on the Subsea 7 website here: