Wales & West Utilities collaborates to accelerate Celtic Sea offshore wind development

Posted on: 13/05/2022

Wales & West Utilities has joined the Celtic Sea Cluster which has been established to harness the power of the Celtic Sea, situated off the coast between Cornwall, Wales and Ireland.

The Celtic Sea Cluster responds to the growing number of project developers keen to harness the power of the Celtic Sea. The Cluster will work to tackle barriers to the pace of development, identify key enabling infrastructure, and provide support for the emerging supply chain.

With floating offshore wind expected to contribute to the creation of more than 29,000 UK jobs, whilst delivering an anticipated £43.6bn in UK gross value add (GVA)¹ by 2050, the Celtic Sea Cluster will boost industry in Wales and south west England.

Matt Hindle, Wales & West Utilities Head of Net Zero & Sustainability, said:

We’re delighted to join the Celtic Sea Cluster. With the Climate Change Committee predicting we’ll need at least 100GW of offshore wind by 2050 to meet our Net Zero targets, we’re looking forward to exploring how green hydrogen production can support the development of offshore energy projects.

If we are to decarbonise homes, businesses and heavy industry across Wales and beyond hydrogen will have a key role to play.

We’re committed to playing our part in helping communities across Wales and south west England go green. Between 2021 and 2026 we’re investing £400m to prepare our network to transport green gas like hydrogen and biomethane.

The Cluster is led by the Welsh Government and Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership, supported by Marine Energy Wales, Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult and Celtic Sea Power, acknowledging the need for a coordinated regional approach between Wales and Cornwall to harness their respective supply chain strengths. Cluster members will include developers and supply chain companies with an interest in floating wind in the Celtic Sea.

Wales & West Utilities is the company that look after the pipes that keep the gas flowing to heat the homes and power businesses of 7.5m people across Wales and south west England. They operate the gas emergency service, connect new homes and businesses, and upgrade the gas network so it’s safe today and fit for the future.

The company is also committed to playing its part in getting to Net Zero carbon emissions by 2050. 46 power stations connected to its network support renewables like wind and solar power while 20 green gas sites inject enough decarbonised green gas to power approx. 180,000 homes, Additionally, company’s network supplies bus garages in three locations across the south west of England, fuelling CNG buses that improve air quality and reduce carbon emissions from public transport.