Supply Chain & Clusters

SUPPLY CHAIN & CLUSTERS

The Supply Chain and Clusters Workstream was established to support the delivery of an increasingly important topic: how a robust, competitive, supply chain can be further developed to compliment the increased deployment of offshore wind, thereby securing the ‘back -bone’ of our industry.

In late 2020, the workstream was slightly ‘revamped’ with a range of key deliverables set to progress. The most immediate task was to help shape the UK policy arena and the overall process for offshore wind project supply chain plans, ensuring that methodologies relating to data collection as part of these activities was reported in the most appropriate way e.g., now

including export activity.

Linked to this, the workstream has also led the development of a broader industry-wide reporting framework to ensure that well beyond project activity, the range of benefits that the industry delivers are better showcased.

"As a workstream we are committed to improving, working and growing together with the industry’s supply chain as we head into what is shaping up to be a very exciting time for offshore wind."

"It is suppliers, with their ingenuity, 

dedication to cost reduction and resilience, who we rely on to ensure offshore wind projects come to life.”

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Richard Sandford
Workstream Sponsor, RWE Renewables

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Julian Brown
Workstream Sponsor, Tekmar

The workstream is in close liaison with the UK Government to provide ongoing tangible feedback regarding aspects where the UK supply chain could be better strengthened to support the future of offshore wind. We have seen a number of welcome announcements from UK Government initiatives aimed at strengthening ports, OEMs and supply chain companies required for successful delivery of renewable and Net Zero targets.

In early 2021, the Supply Chain Workstream combined with the Clusters Workstream for closer working, transparency and alignment. Clusters play a valuable role as part of the UK Industrial Strategy commitments relating to offshore wind and there are currently eight of these around the UK, representing the key regions that host UK offshore wind projects. The clusters operate on the ground daily, flying the flag for the local regions, facilitating networking activities across

and between the supply chain tiers and maximising business opportunities both at home and abroad. The clusters will co

ntinue to play an increasingly valuable role as the new supply chain plan process becomes embedded and as further fixed and floating offshore wind is deployed. Finally, the workstream is pleased to have further strengthened its relationship with Scottish counterpart the Scottish Offshore Wind Energy Council (SOWEC). Following recent recommendations, OWIC and SOWEC have begun working more closely and with a number of common goals. The two bodies are working together to assess which measures will be most valuable to take forward with the development of the UK supply chain in mind.

Looking ahead, the workstream aims to revisit a previous roadmap that considered how UK industrial growth can be achieved in tandem with the growth of fixed bottom and floating offshore wind. It is also working closely with a range of other workstreams including Pathways to Growth and People and Skills, recognising that a successful future supply chain relies greatly on a successful pipeline of skilled and diverse workers.

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Helen Thomas
Workstream Lead, RWE Renewables