Associate Feature: Berwick Bank ready to deliver an economic power punch
As the world pivots towards sustainable energy solutions, the deployment of offshore wind farms off our rugged coastline holds the promise of not only bolstering Scotland’s renewable energy capacity but also fostering economic growth, job creation, and enterprise development.
Scotland stands on the cusp of an offshore renewable energy revolution, one that will not only cut millions of tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions every year but will also support the creation of thousands of green jobs and direct billions of pounds of investment into the country’s economy.
At the forefront of that potential revolution is the proposed 4.1GW Berwick Bank Wind Farm. Located around 38km off the coast of East Lothian, Berwick Bank is one of the largest offshore renewable energy projects in the world and could comprise of up to 307 turbines. The global scale project, which is being taken forward by SSE Renewables, is currently seeking development consent from the Scottish Government.
According to Berwick Bank Project Director, Alex Meredith, the delivery of Berwick Bank is not just about helping meet Net Zero and energy security targets – it’s about providing a multi-billion-pound boost to the Scottish economy and generating thousands of skilled green jobs.
“SSE Renewables is committed to delivering investment in jobs and skills in Scotland through Berwick Bank Wind Farm. If we obtain consent to proceed with Berwick Bank, we can provide a significant boost to the offshore wind supply chain here and encourage investors to get involved in the sector in Scotland at scale. Consenting a project of this scale can provide the step change we need to unlock investment in Scotland.”
An economic impact study carried out by independent renewable energy consultants, BVG Associates (BVGA), has shown that at peak construction in 2026 the Berwick Bank project could create around 4,650 direct, indirect and induced jobs in Scotland, and 9,300 in the UK – adding an estimated £8.3 billion to the UK economy as a whole over the lifetime of the project. Of that UK investment, BVGA estimate that as much as £4.1 billion can be directly invested into the Scottish economy over the lifetime, from construction through to operation.
Alex Meredith continues: “The independent economic analysis considers the project’s potential based on an enhanced UK supply scenario, where all plausible procurement decisions for local, Scottish and UK supply are included, which illustrates the huge benefits to the economy if Berwick Bank is approved. It represents a significant opportunity to deliver high-quality green jobs that can be sustained throughout the life of the project.”
Once operational, SSE Renewables estimates that Berwick Bank would support around 4,500 jobs in Scotland (direct, indirect and induced), over the duration of the operational life of the wind farm.
“Berwick Bank can generate not just enough clean, renewable energy to power over six million homes, equivalent to supplying all of Scotland’s households twice over, it can also generate significant revenue and jobs for Scotland and the UK,” Alex Meredith adds.
“Given the right investment environment and supply chain opportunities throughout the project life-cycle, Berwick Bank will play a key role in helping Scotland and the UK meet net zero targets in a way that delivers a boost to the economy. It will also pave the way for the roll out of the proposed Scotwind projects that will further advance the country’s ability to generate abundant green energy.”
Quoted 6,192,414 homes powered per annum based on Typical Domestic Consumption Values, typical 50% projected wind load factor, and projected installed capacity of 4.1GW. Economic contribution and peak construction jobs claims based on socio-economic report by independent renewable energy consultants, BVG Associates.
This article is sponsored by SSE Renewables