North East’s ‘most versatile’ clean energy park provides a unique co-location opportunity for the renewables sector with unrestricted, 24/7 marine access
Port of Tyne is using the Offshore Wind North East conference as the forum to launch its latest commercial venture, a new green energy park for the north east region. Tyne Clean Energy Park has already welcomed its first tenant and will create a convenient, versatile strategic base for the region’s rapidly growing renewable energy sector. Port of Tyne’s new clean energy park will play an important role in supporting the government’s goal to power every UK home with offshore wind electricity.
Located on 4 sites, the Port of Tyne is one of only two deep sea ports in the north east region. Offering sites and berths to accommodate deep drafted vessels with no beam restriction, Port and Tyne Clean Energy Park users will benefit from unrestricted, lock free access to berths with 13.0m of depth alongside. The Port is a safe haven for offshore wind operators and other renewables specialists that is open 24/7, 365 days a year, during all tide states.
Earlier in 2020, the Port was selected as Equinor’s flagship operations and maintenance base, for what will become the world’s largest offshore wind farm at Dogger Bank. This success provided the catalyst for further land clearance to free up additional space for renewable energy tenants. The new Tyne Clean Energy Park will provide an infrastructure catering for all renewable energy production needs, with a total of 200 acres of land soon to become available within the park’s perimeters. Attracting tenants to Tyneside is expected to create thousands of jobs.
By choosing the Tyne Clean Energy Park as a commercial base, renewables businesses joining Equinor will have a unique opportunity to co-locate every aspect of their supply chains – from manufacturing and assembly operations to installation and maintenance activities. The Port’s unique location on the River Tyne provides safe and efficient marine access to existing offshore wind farm sites including Dogger Bank, Seagreen and Sofia, plus outstanding air, road and rail transport links to the rest of the UK and beyond.
The river Tyne is already home to an existing offshore cluster, with partner organisations such as the UK renowned South Tyneside Marine College, A&P, Smulders Projects, Shepherd Offshore and TechnipFMC, contributing to a well- established offshore energy supply chain. This existing infrastructure further increases the Port of Tyne’s suitability as a commercial base for renewables manufacturers, operators and servicing providers. Tyneside is also renowned for its local pool of offshore energy industry professionals, who have highly transferable skills for the renewables sector.
Port of Tyne is already rapidly transforming its own commercial operations to become a low-carbon industrial hub and made a clear commitment to decarbonisation in its Tyne 2050 strategy. This outlines the Port’s strategic vision to become an Enabler and Operator of clean energy powered maritime supply chain services, including being ‘Carbon Neutral by 2030’ and ‘All Electric by 2040’.
Matt Beeton, CEO at Port of Tyne says: “Tyne Clean Energy Park provides a fantastic opportunity for companies in the renewables sector who are looking for a long term operational base. We are absolutely committed to becoming a low carbon industrial hub and supporting innovation, so launching a green business hub at the Port is a natural evolution of our vision.”
Demonstrating a long term commitment to innovation, the Port of Tyne is leading the UK’s first 2050 Maritime Innovation Hub, a collaboration of organisations from maritime logistics, technology and academia. Launched in response to the government’s call for greater innovation in maritime, this has focused on a range of projects, including investigating the potential of renewables within Port of Tyne plus maritime relevant solutions using autonomous systems and AI.
Simon Brett, Commercial Director at Port of Tyne says: “There are three distinct supply chains relating to the offshore wind farm lifecycle involving component manufacture, construction services and operations. Each one of these requires different levels of investment, from plant and infrastructure to labour resourcing and all of it will be accommodated at the Tyne Clean Energy Park – it’s an excellent opportunity for businesses looking to expand their activities.”
Matt Beeton, CEO at Port of Tyne says: “With our access to offshore wind locations and deep water facilities, Tyne Clean Energy Park is definitely the most versatile on the East Coast. We’ve created a unique, development-ready blank canvas for renewables businesses to expand their operations and in facilitating this, we can directly contribute towards achieving 60% UK content for each wind farm developed. It’s integral to securing the green recovery that our region and the whole country so desperately needs.”