“My particular business has not noticed the recession yet. We have been getting busier and busier over the last few years in the offshore wind industry and we hope that will continue for many years to come.””
So said Matthew Knight, Head of Business Development at Siemens. His comments come at a time when the offshore wind industry is coming under fire for the potentially large costs the farms will cost the UK.
ELN asked Mr Knight if British jobs would be safe due to the large amount of foreign investment being injected into UK renewables from companies such as Siemens.
“We’re planning on establishing a factory on the East coast of England. We’re looking to make a real commitment to sourcing as much as we can from the UK. 35% of all the man hours on a wind farm happen during the operation of that wind farm. Those jobs have to be local to where the wind farm is. With half of Europe’s plans for offshore wind, we’ll have half of the operational and maintenance jobs.”
Siemens certainly see a long future in UK wind. Mr Knight told ELN: “The offshore wind industry’s going to be very important for the UK in the future. Not just for meeting our carbon targets but in terms of jobs and prosperity.”