SCOTLAND’S oil and gas supply chain can help reduce offshore wind-energy costs by at least 20%.
Scottish Enterprise (SE) says this in a new guide highlighting potential cross-overs in the sectors.
SE’s Guide to Offshore Wind and Oil and Gas Capability estimates that, over the average lifecycle of a typical offshore windfarm, oil and gas service firms could deliver £300million of savings.
SE says the skills, knowledge and expertise of the oil and gas industry could significantly reduce project development timescales and operational project costs in areas such as installation, personnel transfer and operational and maintenance activity.
Adrian Gillespie, the economic development quango’s director of energy and low-carbon technologies, said: “With the UK offshore wind market poised to grow rapidly over the next four years and the Scottish Government setting ambitious renewable-energy targets, we must ensure Scotland is best-placed to capitalise on these opportunities.
“Scotland has over 40 years’ experience in the oil and gas sector, which could greatly benefit the offshore wind sector.
“By encouraging greater collaboration and knowledge sharing between these two important sectors, we will create a lasting and positive effect on the Scottish economy.”
SE’s guide features a number of case studies, including Aberdeen-based energy engineering consultant Xodus Group, to highlight the benefits to firms diversifying from oil and gas work into renewables.
Xodus Group chief executive Colin Manson said the opportunities in the low-carbon market, specifically in offshore wind, for oil and gas companies were “vast”.
“We anticipate our turnover to increase significantly over the next four years through greater collaboration with developers, academia and the finance sector,” Mr Manson added.
SE’s new guide is the direct result of an oil, gas and renewable-energy summit in Aberdeen last December.
It also comes as international delegates gather for the 2011 Scottish Low-Carbon Investment Conference, which takes place in Edinburgh tomorrow and on Wednesday.