New wind farms supply chain in East of England could revitalise UK manufacturing
GMB call on councils, employers and further education providers to join lobby for wind turbines fabrication jobs into East of England coastal areas as wind energy set to treble by 2035
Areas like Harwich, Felixstowe, Lowestoft, Great Yarmouth and Kings Lynn should get investment to be in the supply chain for the additional 2,700 giant wind turbines and jackets and maintenance of them needed says GMB London
GMB London, the union for metal fabrication and energy workers, is calling for coastal locations in the East of England to be chosen for the new facilities required to fabricate and maintain the additional 2,700 giant wind turbines and jackets needed for 30GW electricity from wind farms by 2035 announced by Government on 14 December.
Areas with links to the maritime sector: Harwich, Felixstowe, Lowestoft, Great Yarmouth and Kings Lynn have a history of fabrication and maintenance of ships and other offshore facilities.
Michael Ainsley, GMB London and East of England Organiser said:
"I don't think that the public has realised how big the demand for fabrication facilities is going to be to realise the challenging aim of 30GW electricity from wind.
“Government has the choice to source the 2,700 giant wind turbines and jackets from new facilities right across the UK. This will mean 180 turbines and jackets each year every year for the foreseeable future.
“This is pressing given the need to revitalise manufacturing in the wake of hundreds of thousands of jobs in the service sector that have already gone or at risk due to the public health emergency.
“A measure of the scale of the work is that each turbine installed and hooked up costs nearly £40m each. Just a small part of the programme can be a source of new well-paid skilled jobs right across the coastal areas of the region. This is apart from the huge programme to maintain a vast network of offshore wind turbines.
“GMB is calling on local authorities, education providers and fabrication employers in areas like Harwich, Felixstowe, Lowestoft, Great Yarmouth and Kings Lynn to join with GMB to get investment in these areas to be part of the programme. This is part of the levelling up agenda in areas badly needing new jobs.
“Without new facilities being developed across the UK, this work will go to yards in the Far East. The only role for workers in the UK will be to fund the subsidies required to make wind farms economically viable from household energy bills. The time for action for green jobs is now."
Contact: Michael Ainsley, GMB London and East of England Organiser 079 7425 0947 or Gavin Davies, GMB London Region Senior Organiser 079 3098 3376