At the beginning of this week the Carbon Trust and our eight
offshore wind developer partners revealed some incredibly
innovative technology to help engineers access the wind turbines
located far offshore in Round 3 sites.
This competition in itself provides a fascinating insight into
the opportunities that green growth will bring. As a sub-set of the
overall offshore wind market, finding new technical solutions to
access offshore turbines will generate a £2bn market opportunity
for the winners. No wonder we received some 450 entries to the
competition from all around the world. Businesses, both small and
large, are waking up to the market opportunities that the low
carbon economy will bring.
Indeed we see offshore wind more widely as a 'once in a
generation' opportunity for the UK.
With electricity demand rising by some 10 per cent and with
around 25 per cent of the nation's generating infrastructure to
replace in a decade offshore, wind should be a core element of our
future energy mix. Not only will it offer energy security and
carbon abatement but, unlike many other supply options, it brings
the chance to generate 'home made' power and attract significant
investment into the supply chain and in turn deliver new jobs and
economic renewal to parts of the UK.
This race for green growth is
happening as clean tech hubs around the UK are increasing vying for
inward investment and in some cases to host the newly forming Green
Indeed I see green growth and the mass rollout of technologies
like offshore wind and marine
energy (if we can get the costs down) as a real no brainer.
It's a fantastic opportunity to help rebalance the economy more in
favour of manufacturing and to spread the economic benefits around
the UK too.
But I think we must be bolder in our thinking and open our
horizons to green growth beyond our own national boundaries. Our
analysis has shown that the UK could seize some 45 per cent of the
global offshore wind market by 2020. Markets such as China should
be seen as an opportunity, not a threat. Indeed we are already
active in China trying to unlock market opportunities for UK
companies as China and other countries in the Far East create new
low carbon markets.
When the Carbon Trust was formed 10 years ago we nailed our
colours to the mast. We believed that the low carbon transition
could only happen if business was centre stage in investing in low
carbon solutions. As economies around the world struggle to expand
I believe green growth will become increasingly important for
businesses and government growth strategies.
In the UK we are well placed not only to benefit from the
rollout of low carbon technologies on our door step to meet our own
needs but, given our long history in innovation, to develop
technologies and sell into a growing global green growth
When we launched we coined and used the phrase 'making business
sense of climate change'. We see no need to change it - in fact we
only see more reasons and opportunities to keep it.