The world’s largest offshore wind turbine maker, Siemens Gamesa, plans to speed up production by opening a facility that has the capability to manufacture all turbine components under one roof.
The company has started manufacturing of nacelles and blades at its new facility in Le Havre. Believed to be the world’s first facility to encompass both offshore wind turbine nacelle and blade manufacturing under one roof, the plant is the largest industrial renewable energy plant in France.
The factory will supply offshore wind components both to the budding French market and across Europe, where governments are promoting investments in offshore wind in an effort to shift towards green energy.
The company said that a dedicated installation hub will also be built on the 20-hectare plot to allow direct load out of wind turbine components for transport to new French offshore wind farms. The first nacelles and blades are already headed for France’s Bay of Saint Brieuc and Fecamp wind farm projects.
“Producing our first offshore wind power components in Le Havre is electrifying. This investment serves as a major driver of the economic growth story in Normandy and in the French offshore wind industry,” said Marc Becker, Siemens Gamesa Offshore Business Unit CEO.
The French Offshore Sector Deal, recently signed by the French government, commits to a target of 18 GW of capacity installed by 2035. To achieve that objective, the government plans to issue license awards of 2 GW per year from 2025 onwards. The country’s long-term ambitions are even higher. In February, French President Emmanuel Macron outlined a broader plan targeting 40 GW of offshore wind capacity by 2050.
France, which hopes to reach carbon-neutrality by 2050, currently has only 2 MW of installed offshore wind.