Broken wind turbines hold the key to 20,000 new UK jobs

A £2.4m government-backed research initiative has been launched to investigate how circularity can be applied to wind turbine production

The UK could create over 20,000 full-time jobs by 2035 and prevent over 800,000 tonnes of wind turbine parts from being discarded if it develops the capabilities to refurbish those parts.

A new coalition has been established to help create a circular supply chain for renewable energy in the UK.

The Coalition for Wind Industry Circularity aims to enable the re-use, refurbishment and re-engineering of broken wind turbine parts.

The group, includes energy company SSE Renewables, the University of Strathclyde, the National Manufacturing Institute Scotland and Renewable Parts.

According to a new analysis by BVG Associates, a UK supply chain capable of refurbishing just ten out of the thousands of parts that make up a single wind turbine could access a European-wide market worth almost £10 billion to UK GDP between 2025 and 2035.

The coalition also released extensive research into the barriers to circularity in the wind industry, which found that most organisations were supportive of the circular economy but struggled with implementation.

Stephen Wheeler, the Managing Director of SSE Renewables, has emphasised the importance of circularity in achieving a sustainable business model and fighting climate change.

According to Wheeler, circularity can help the renewables sector deliver the green energy required for net zero in a sustainable manner.

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