INTERNATIONAL energy sector heavyweights have underlined their belief in the potential to develop floating windfarms successfully off Scotland in projects they reckon could generate big economic benefits for the country.
Renewable energy specialist Invenergy and oil services giant BW Offshore confirmed they submitted bids in the landmark ScotWind offshore licensing round, which closed to applications in July.
The companies said they had formed a joint venture that would focus on developing both floating and fixed foundation offshore wind projects off the north east coast of Scotland. They said the projects they are considering are expected to bring billions of pounds of investment to the Scottish and UK supply chain.
“The projects are also expected to create substantial high value specialised jobs, both direct and indirect, within Scotland, that would provide a considerable economic contribution to Scotland for decades to come,” the companies added, without providing further details.
The announcement offers a further indication of the scale of the interest generated by the ScotWind licensing round, which is being run by Crown Estate Scotland.
The round is the first offshore wind auction to cover acreage off Scotland for a decade.
A range of giants drawn from the oil and gas, power generation and finance sectors submitted bids for licences, including ScottishPower, SSE, BP and Shell.
Participants have appeared keen to play up the potential for the projects they are planning to deliver economic benefits for Scotland.
BP has said it plans to develop an offshore centre of excellence in Aberdeen. This week it held out the prospect the centre could help create 120 jobs.
Chicago-based Invenergy has developed renewable energy facilities around the world, including two onshore windfarms in Scotland. It is developing a windfarm in Ayrshire.
BW Offshore supplies floating production storage and offloading vessels used by oil and gas firms. It has headquarters in Oslo.