The Port of Milford Haven has submitted a significant multi-million pound funding application to the UK Government’s FLOWMIS (Floating Offshore Wind Manufacturing Investment Scheme) initiative to expand Pembroke Port.
This ambitious project aims to create a cutting-edge port base that will play a pivotal role in nurturing a Wales-based supply chain dedicated to the burgeoning floating offshore wind sector.
The proposal also aligns with the vision of the Celtic Freeport.
The proposed expansion of Pembroke Port will cater to the rapidly evolving demands of this new green energy sector, Floating Offshore Wind (FLOW).
With an emphasis on sustainability and innovation, this development seeks to provide a delivery platform for the 400MW test and demonstration phase and a fit-for-purpose site for integration, and operations and maintenance activities in support of the commercial-scale phase over the coming decades.
The expanded port is strategically positioned to become a linchpin in the creation of a robust supply chain within the FLOW industry.
By nurturing partnerships and collaborations among local businesses and international players, the expansion aims to bolster the region's expertise and capabilities in this cutting-edge sector, while boosting economic growth and contributing to Wales' renewable energy targets.
Commenting on the submission, Tom Sawyer, CEO of the Port of Milford Haven, stated: “This is another important milestone in the growing strength and evolution of the UK’s Energy Port.
“As the closest port to the Celtic Sea development sites and home to a heavy engineering skills-base, we are thrilled to present this application in response to the FLOWMIS initiative. It represents a pivotal step towards accelerating the growth of the floating offshore wind industry in Wales.
“The expansion of Pembroke Port will not only drive economic development, but also foster the emergence of a green supply chain that aligns seamlessly with the goals of the Celtic Freeport.
“The Port of Milford Haven will be sharing its plans with the public over the coming months.”
The Port of Milford Haven’s FLOWMIS application has received cross-party political support from local polticians and councillors.
Rt Hon Simon Hart, Conservative MP for Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire, said: “To create a new green industry for Wales, we need enhanced port infrastructure like the renewables terminal at Pembroke Port.
“The ambition of this project matches the UK Government's goal of expanding the offshore wind industry from the Celtic Sea and the wider green economy.”
Sam Kurtz, Conservative MS for Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire, remarked: “The port of Milford Haven’s FLOWMIS bid is vital for Pembrokeshire, and our local and national economies.
“This bid will enable Pembrokeshire to become the offshore floating wind hub of Wales and the UK and is expected to generate thousands of new jobs, putting Wales at the forefront of sustainable energy initiatives.
“The submission of the port of Milford Haven’s FLOWMIS bid is a crucial step in this process. I wish them every success in this and give my full support in the pursuit of this sustainable energy initiative as we look forward to the future of energy production in Wales.”
Rt Hon Stephen Crabb, Conservative MP for Preseli Pembrokeshire, commented: “The UK Government has taken an important step in creating this funding programme to help get British ports get ready for floating offshore wind.
“The Port of Milford Haven is clearly one of the most important locations for unlocking the Celtic Sea opportunity, so I hope Ministers will look favourably on their application. I look forward to championing this bid at Westminster to help get it across the line.”
Paul Davies, Conservative MS for Preseli Pembrokeshire, commented: “I wholeheartedly back the vision behind an expanded renewables terminal at Pembroke Port.
“If Wales is to land the floating offshore wind supply chain, we need port infrastructure as close as possible to the Celtic Sea development area. That's why I urge the UK Government to back this bid to take the UK's Energy Port forward into a new chapter,"
Cllr Paul Miller, Labour Deputy Leader, Cabinet Member for Place, the Region and Climate Change at Pembrokeshire County Council said: “Our county has a proud heritage of playing a significant part in the energy sector in Wales and the UK.
“This initiative, which will expand Pembroke Port’s capabilities, will have the potential to benefit Pembrokeshire enormously, providing highly-skilled jobs, attracting investment to our economy and supporting the local supply chain.
“Positioning our county at the centre of floating offshore wind production will also support the UK to meet its net zero carbon emissions targets,” he added.
“Anchoring the floating offshore wind supply chain in south west Wales is critical to our joint endeavour to tackle the climate emergency,” commented Eluned Morgan, MS for Mid and West Wales.
She added: “The floating offshore wind (FLOW) prize is huge. We need to move decisively and at scale.
“That's why I back the vision for a dedicated integration, operations and maintenance FLOW terminal at Pembroke Port and call on the UK Government to back the Port of Milford Haven's FLOWMIS bid to a take another step towards delivering this green industry for Pembrokeshire's future generations.”
Cefin Campbell, Plaid Cymru MS for Mid & West Wales, added: “The forthcoming expansion of FLOW in the Celtic Sea will represent a step-change in sustainable energy production, and Mid and West Wales is primed to become a world leader in developing this exciting new green technology and infrastructure.
“I am keen to ensure that we are in the very best position to make the most of this opportunity, and I welcome and support this proposed expansion of Pembroke Port.
“I am clear that the rapid expansion of this new green energy sector must benefit our communities by ensuring high quality, high skilled and high paying jobs, opportunities for education and training, and the development of local supply chains.
“Securing this upgrade to the facilities at Pembroke Port will be an important step in the development of a made-in-Wales FLOW sector.”
Jane Dodds, Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrat and MS for Mid & West Wales, said: “This is an incredible step forward for Pembrokeshire and a generational opportunity to lead the development of floating offshore wind in Wales.
“The project marks an incredible investment in communities across Pembrokeshire and Neath Port Talbot, and I look forward to seeing the impact that the project has on the local economy, and the opportunities available to communities to benefit from the investment. The project has my full support.”