When it comes to circular economy, the renewables sector must surely aim to lead the way – from the decarbonisation of maritime operations to end-of-life recycling of blades. The sector is at an important crossroads: the first generation of turbines are reaching the end of their 25 to 30-year lifespans at sea and something has to be done with this legacy. We estimate that by 2050, the offshore wind industry will need to decommission more than 10,000 turbines globally. In the same way the UK has innovated to reduce costs in wind energy, it is essential to ensure we create innovative solutions to create round trip sustainability for the materials necessary for turbines and bring forward new solutions for thermoset plastics and glass fibre. The next generations need to be circular from the start, designing out waste, developing more sustainable materials and refurbishing old components. A supply chain that can do this will find itself the first choice of turbine manufacturers.
City AM 30th May 2021 read more »