Global energy giant Equinor has a key stake in Dogger Bank wind farm, along with partners SSE Renewables and Eni, and is passionate about ensuring its substantial investment benefits the local community and supply chain.

Building on the proud history of innovation in the region, the company, a member of North East England Chamber of Commerce, and its partners are creating 200 skilled jobs in the Tyne region, with more to follow from companies such as North Star Renewables, who will create a further 170 jobs.

Tom Nightingale, NE stakeholder manager for Equinor said: “It is really important to us, that this opportunity to massively boost South Tyneside’s economy really makes a difference to local people. We want them to be part of the success story of offshore wind and to get a chance to feel real pride in this huge feat of offshore engineering.”

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Dogger Bank Wind Farm will be fully operational by 2026 and it will be run from a state-of-the-art operations and maintenance base currently being built at Tyne Dock Enterprise Park (TDEP) part of the Port of Tyne’s Tyne Clean Energy Park. SSE Renewables is managing the construction phase of the wind farm and Equinor will operate the wind farm for its 35-year lifetime, which will supply renewable power to the equivalent of around 6 million homes.

Port of Tyne’s chief commercial officer, Charlotte Brown, said: “We are exceptionally proud to be supporting the development of the operations and maintenance base for the world’s largest offshore wind farm at Tyne Clean Energy Park. The project will bring jobs and opportunities for South Tyneside throughout the supply chain and we look forward to the impact it will have on the region.”

The wind farm is investing millions in the operational building itself with over £7m being spent in the regional supply chain and over half of that directly with companies in the South Tyneside area.

Many North East companies have also benefited from sub-contracts during the construction phase of the wind farm itself.

One of the local Chamber members benefiting from the local approach is South Tyneside-based Metec Cathodic Protection. This Jarrow firm manufactures long-term corrosion protection products for steel piles, offshore structures and foundations for the port, harbour and offshore renewable energy industry.

Metec has won two tenders for Dogger Bank Wind Farm via other companies in the supply chain. The first one is a six figure value contract to supply and install a 25-year protection system for the sheet pile wall at the Equinor facility at TDEP.

This work is in addition to Metec’s larger offshore renewable contract of £6.5 million to supply corrosion protection for the Dogger Bank Wind Farm itself.

Established in 2016, Metec UK, has manufacturing facilities in Tunisia as well as South Tyneside, with representation around the globe. Initially employing just six people, the company now has a team of up to 45, with over half of its talent pool coming from South Tyneside.

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Another Chamber member benefitting from the project is Darlington-based Tekmar Energy, part of Tekmar Group, an engineering services and technology provider for the global offshore energy markets. Tekmar Energy will provide a highly engineered cable protection solution, including the Cable Protection System (CPS), under what is its largest contract win to date.

All systems will be manufactured at Tekmar Energy’s state-of-the-art facility in Newton Aycliffe, 50km from Dogger Bank’s third phase export cable landfall site in Teesside. The first systems are expected to be delivered from August 2022, with production continuing into 2024.

The project benefits from Tekmar Group’s unique engineering capability and extensive industry experience. Tekmar Energy is working alongside sister companies Subsea Innovation (Darlington), AgileTek Engineering and Ryder Geotechnical (Newcastle) to deliver a holistic cable protection solution that overcomes the wind farm’s challenging site conditions.

Gary Howland, Tekmar group sales director, said: “As a company headquartered in the North East, we are extremely proud to play a part in this hugely significant project for the region.”

The Dogger Bank Wind Farm will be located 130km off the North East coast of England. It will be capable of generating enough renewable energy to power six million UK homes once fully operational.

More than 3,000 new UK jobs have been announced so far that will be supported by the construction and operation of Dogger Bank Wind Farm. One rotation of the Haliade-X turbine blades to be installed there will be able to power one UK home for more than two days.

Michelle Wilcox, Chamber senior relationship manager said: “This development is tremendous for not just South Tyneside but the whole region. The employment opportunities and prestigious contracts for our North East businesses are unrivalled. This investment by Equinor and its partners is a massive vote of confidence in us all and our growing expertise in the offshore and renewables sector.”


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