A new guide highlighting the commercial potential for local companies to win contracts to plan, build and maintain onshore wind farms, and to provide a wide range of support services for those involved in Britain’s onshore wind industry has been published by a renewables trade association.
The “Local Supply Chain Opportunities in Onshore Wind – Good Practice Guide” takes companies through each phase of developing an onshore wind farm in detail. It explains how local businesses can work with developers to secure contracts – maximising the local content of projects in their area.
The guide includes case studies of onshore projects such as Fallago Rig wind parc, near Duns in the Borders, which delivered a total of £18 million gross value added (GVA) to the UK economy and created more than 320 jobs in the 2-year construction period alone.
The study draws on good examples to demonstrate how developers are maximising their presence locally very early in the process, in the pre-construction phase. They also raise awareness of the opportunities by holding “meet the buyer” events for local companies, as well as seeking partnerships with local authorities and business groups, and auditing their local spend.
Welcoming the publication of the Guide, UK Energy Secretary Edward Davey said: “The Government is committed to onshore wind as part of the energy mix that is tackling climate change and boosting energy security though increasing ‘homegrown’ sources.
“The Good Practice Guide will help local communities see even greater financial benefits from hosting onshore wind developments. I hope to see many more local businesses across the UK compete and win contracts.”
A spokesperson for RenewableUK added: “The onshore wind industry has proved to be a powerhouse for economic growth in the UK, with much of the benefits staying in the area – for example 60% or more of the construction spend is typically local. This document includes case studies showing where and how this has been achieved.
“The economic injection that comes with each project can be repeated around the UK whenever an onshore wind farm is built, as a lifeline to local communities”.