The Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult, who are in partnership with Zero Waste Scotland, have put together the ‘End of Life Materials Mapping for Offshore Wind in Scotland’ report. This report outlines how Scotland can create a successful circular economy through developing its offshore wind market, recycling wind turbines, and creating 20,000 jobs in the process.
The report claims that for Scotland’s offshore wind proposals to be successful, large amounts of material is needed. Within Scotland, as offshore wind is decommissioned and wind turbines are dismantled, 1.5 million to 2.4 million tonnes of material could be generated for recycling. The report states that large amounts of the material generated from these wind turbines can be recycled, refurbished and repaired within the circular economy supply chain to produce new wind turbines.
If recycled material is used, the report states that there could be a further 34% of carbon saved, as raw materials will not need to be sourced and processed.
The Scottish Government plans to reach its 2030 target that aims to increase its offshore wind capacity to 11GW. Projected growth in offshore wind supply chain opportunities have increased due to this target and also through the ScotWind leasing round, and the Innovation and Targeted Oil and Gas (INTOG) leasing process.
If the country is successful in carrying out its proposed plans to increase its offshore wind, by 2033, its capacity could reach 40GW.
Iain Gulland, chief executive of Zero Waste Scotland, stated that the circular economy created by offshore wind can cause positives such as “substantial job creation and (the) development of new skills”.
The Scottish Government will be consulting on these proposals until the 22nd of August 2022.