The construction of a major new wind farm in the Firth of Forth could lead to many new jobs and security throughout the local supply chain, a survey has suggested.
The survey, conducted by the Neart na Gaoithe (NnG) Offshore Wind Farm Coalition, revealed that 96% of the wind farm supply chain companies polled believe that the wind farm would result in new jobs.
96% also said the wind farm would enable them to create work for other local companies, while 70% said that the growth of the wind industry in Scotland would help to provide security for their organisation.
24% said that each contract could be worth over £250,000, while 10% said that the wind farm could lead to the creation of up to 50 new jobs.
The NnG Offshore Wind Farm Coalition is made up of 75 local companies that support the proposed 450MW NnG offshore wind farm. The £2bn development would be constructed in the Outer Forth Estuary.
In 2014 the Scottish Parliament consented to the construction of an NnG wind farm in the Firth of Forth. An appeal against the decision by RSPB Scotland was rejected last year by the UK Supreme Court.
50 supply chain companies were consulted in the survey. 62% said that they had been affected by the downturn in the Scottish oil and gas industry, and 60% said they had invested in training and skills related to the wind power sector.
The convenor of the coalition, Alan Duncan, presented the survey results to Paul Wheelhouse MSP, the Scottish Government Minister for Business and Energy, last week. The Scottish Government has committed to sourcing 100% of the country’s electricity from renewable energy sources by 2020.
An earlier study by the Fraser of Allander Institute estimated that 2,000 jobs would be created by the NnG project for every year of its construction and that it would inject £827m into the Scottish economy.
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