Global Port Services has confirmed the award of multiple contracts in support of the Seagreen wind farm, securing over 100 jobs and marking its first major awards since the opening of a new quayside space.
Working on behalf of Seagreen Wind Energy Limited (SWEL), Global will provide enabling works for the pre-assembly construction of wind turbine components (WTGs) at parent Global Energy Group’s Port of Nigg facility in the Cromarty Firth.
It will be the first contract of its type to be brought to the Port since the unveiling of a new purpose-built east quay in July, and follows existing work managing 114 ‘jacket’ foundation towers for the project on the south quay as part of a separate contract for Seaway 7.
News of the contract comes as the final turbine foundations for the project arrive at the quayside to be prepared for installation at the project’s site, around 17 miles off the coast of Angus.
Built by a joint venture of SSE Renewables (49%) and TotalEnergies (51%), the £3 billion, 1.1 gigawatt (GW) project is due to be fully operational in summer 2023.
The scheme is currently a little over halfway through construction, with 57 of the project’s 114 Vestas V164-10MW turbines installed as of mid-October.
Since 2021, parts for the turbines, including blades, nacelles, and the supporting towers have arrived from Vestas’ base at Able Seaton Port in Hartlepool.
Of the 114 blade sets due to be installed at Seagreen, 99 sets – or 297 blades in total – are being produced domestically at Vestas’ manufacturing facility in the Isle of Wight, while other components were built by Vestas in Esbjerg, Denmark.
However, the jackets already marshalled at the port were fabricated in the UAE and China, to the chagrin of local unions and manufacturers.
‘Green jobs boost’
The latest contracts, which will run through to next summer, will see Global Port Services provide project management and technical support for site enabling works, pre-assembly set up, and services such as craneage, labour, plant, equipment, and quayside support.
The overall pre-assembly construction project will support more than 100 jobs at the port, which Global says had brought a “green jobs boost” and wider economic benefits to the local area.
Global will also support Vestas and BMS Heavy Lift, who will carry out the onshore assembly and offshore installation.
Commenting on the latest contract award, Global Port Services chief executive Alistair Gordon saidhe was “delighted to support yet another significant project for wind energy in Scotland.”
“Won on the back of the successes of the Siemens Beatrice and Vestas Moray East offshore wind pre-assembly contracts, which were also Scotland’s largest [wind farms] at the time, the new contract awards are an accolade to the excellent logistics support services and dedicated facilities on offer at Nigg, and it marks the first major project to be secured for the new East Quay, of which I hope there will be many more.”
Seagreen WTG installation manager Rob Richardson added: “This award further strengthens our relationship with the Port of Nigg and Global Port Services and plays a critical role in the successful delivery of the Seagreen project. The short mobilization period is testament to the flexibility and positive approach by the Global Port Services team and a robust local supply chain.”
Global said securing the pre-assembly work was “a coup” for the company and the facility, and testament to the importance of its newly opened east quay, which it described as a “game changer” for the portfolio of companies based on site.
At 225m long and 50m wide, the new area increased the port’s deepwater quayside capacity to over 1,200m, making it amongst the largest in Scotland and enabling logistics specialists like Global to service offer simultaneous services for both offshore wind foundations and turbine towers – as in the case of Seagreen.
Meanwhile, the group is also delivering marshalling and installation work for the onshore Creag Riabhach wind farm in Lairg, on behalf of Enercon.
Global’s recently launched Global Wind Projects unit is now set to complete the installation of the turbines on site, working alongside sister company Global Cranes Services.