Production is being increased at an Isle of Wight factory building the world’s largest wind turbines, spanning wider than the London Eye and standing taller than the Gherkin skyscraper in the City on London. Yet these giants of the seabed, destined initially for the shallow waters off north Wales, Merseyside and Cumbria, will begin to arrive only after an industrial back story that mirrors the vacillations of wind turbine electricity generation. “Our mission is to bring affordable offshore wind power and to bring down the cost of providing offshore wind power, but to be successful we need a stable pipeline of work,” Jens Tommerup, chief executive of MHI Vestas, said. The company employs more than 200 people on the Isle of Wight, who are making 80-metre composite blades. Burbo Bank and Walney will be built on arrangements in which British consumers are paying £145/MWh, about three times the present cost of electricity under a scheme designed to incentivise the building of offshore arrays. Future schemes, however, will be paid less, going down first to £105/MWh and then to £85/MWh.
Times 11th April 2016 read more »