Private investment totalling tens of millions of pounds will be made in Scotland’s Port of Leith as the port, near Edinburgh, repositions for the rapidly emerging North Sea renewables market.
The finance will see the port, the country’s largest deepwater harbour , add land linked to over 3km of quaysides to its current 115 hectares to the site, which has handled work including recently for EDF Renewables’ 450MW Neart na Gaoithe (NnG) offshore wind project.
“This investment is another example of our commitment to bring large-scale renewables to Scotland,” said David Webster, senior port manager of Forth Ports, which owns the Port of Leith among eight commercial ports in the UK.
“This will allow Leith to build on its current success as well as complement the significant upgrades that are under way in our Dundee facility. The foundation logistics in Leith will be supported by the wind turbine hub in Dundee, we see this as the future to local content in Scotland that will drive employment.”
NnG project director Matthias Haag said: “Since the offshore construction of NnG started in August, the Port of Leith is already marine logistics base for the pile casings … [which] will form part of the foundations on which the project’s 54 turbines and two substations will stand.
This investment in the Port of Leith will see the skyline of the site changed, with the final stages of the planned demolition of the Imperial Grain Silo being completed.
Forth Ports operates commercial ports in the UK including Tilbury on the Thames, Dundee on the Firth of Tay and six on the Firth of Forth – Leith, Grangemouth, Rosyth, Methil, Burntisland and Kirkcaldy.
Scottish ports have emerged as focal point in the UKs industrial redevelopment for the offshore wind build-out, with the Port of Cromarty recently inking a letter of intent with French floating wind pioneer Ideol that could lead to development of a hull manufacturing yard there, while Recharge revealed recenlty how plans are underway to build the UK's largest offshore wind fabrication plant in the Highlands.
Scotland’s has raised its ambitions for its 2030 offshore wind power targets, setting an 11GW goal as part its wider national green recovery and decarbonisation strategies. The UK government recently re-affirming its aim of a 40GW 2030 ambition for Britain as a whole.