The merger was announced today of two of the UK’s highest-profile organisations working in offshore renewables – The Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult (ORE Catapult) and the National Renewable Energy Centre (Narec).
Combining the two “will form a national champion for the development and cost reduction of offshore wind, wave and tidal energy across the UK”, it was claimed.
ORE Catapult chief executive Andrew Jamieson will lead the merged organisation. His counterpart at Narec, Andrew Mill, becomes a non-executive director of ORE Catapult.
The new body will be known as the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult.
Glasgow-based ORE Catapult is one of seven technology and innovation centres set up in a bid to transform the UK’s innovation capability.
Narec, based in Blyth, northeast England, is a major test and development centre for offshore wind and tidal systems, including a 100-metre blade test facility.
The UK offshore wind sector is working towards a national cost target of £100/MWh ($166/MWh) by the end of the decade.
Jamieson said: “Narec and the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult will together create a world-leading innovation and asset assurance business, serving the entire offshore renewable sector and returning value on Government investment many times over.
“We will play a leading role in ensuring the UK replicates the success of the oil and gas industries, creating many thousands of skilled jobs, contributing billions of pounds to the economy and ensuring that the UK has a major influence on European policy, funding and offshore renewable energy development in the decades to come.”