UK appoints Offshore Wind Champion and opens £160m floating wind fund

Tim Pick will play a vital role in spearheading the work to accelerate new offshore wind projects across the UK and will chair the Offshore Wind Acceleration Taskforce

Big Zero Report 2022

The UK Government has appointed Tim Pick as the country’s first Offshore Wind Champion and opened a £160 million floating offshore wind fund.

Mr Pick, former Head of Energy, Resources and Infrastructure at law firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, will play a vital role in spearheading the work to accelerate new offshore wind projects across the UK and will chair the Offshore Wind Acceleration Taskforce (OWAT).

OWAT will bring together companies from across the offshore wind sector to co-ordinate their efforts and accelerate the development of the industry.

The appointment comes as the government opened the Floating Offshore Wind Manufacturing Investment Scheme (FLOWMIS), calling on industry for information on how best to invest the funding which was initially announced in October 2021.

It aims to boost the renewable capability in Scotland, Wales and elsewhere by supporting manufacturers and giving private investors the confidence to back the emerging sector which is expected to rapidly expand over the coming years.

There are currently two operational floating offshore wind projects in the UK, generating power off the coast of Scotland at Hywind Scotland and Kincardine.

The funding will unlock further deepwater port infrastructure and support private investment in new factories to mass produce major components for floating offshore wind, with ambitions for projects off the coast of Wales.

A total of 15GW of floating offshore wind has been announced in Scottish waters through the ScotWind leasing round and a further 4GW is to be leased off the Welsh coast in the Celtic Sea, which could require more than 1,000 floating wind foundations in total.

The Request for Information will help the government to understand the opportunities available in the UK and how private investment can most effectively be supported.

The British Energy Security Strategy aims to deliver up to 50GW of offshore wind by 2030, including up to 5GW of innovative floating wind.

Business and Energy Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said: “We are delighted to appoint Tim Pick as the UK’s first Offshore Wind Champion and begin the process of supporting British jobs and offshore wind manufacturers with £160 million of government funding.

“Our announcement today represents another important step in our ambitious plans to accelerate offshore wind as a source of affordable, homegrown energy for the UK and drive down bills for households.”

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