The Irish port of Rosslare is to invest €200m in making itself the country’s main base for offshore wind farm construction as Ireland aims to generate 80% of its energy from renewable sources by 2030.
The port is located on Ireland’s east coast in County Wexford, about 120km south of Dublin. It is Ireland’s main “roll-on, roll-off” (RoRo) port, and recorded a 370% increase in freight last year.
According to a press statement from port operator Rosslare Europort, the facility is ideally positioned to be an offshore construction hub because it is within 100km of most of the planned developments in the Irish Sea, and has the capacity to handle the “marshalling, assembly, staging and load-out” of the components of a wind farm.
Glenn Carr, the general manager of Rosslare Europort, commented to local media: “It is clear that not only is Rosslare Europort uniquely placed to support the development of the industry, but that this development can be a transformative one for the southeast region.”
“In terms of economic potential, the southeast can be to offshore renewables what Dublin’s silicon docks are to the tech sector.”
To prepare for this role, the port will carry out dredging, build a control centre, construct a quay and set aside 50 acres for storage.
Last year, Dublin Port Company revealed plans for a €400m expansion, including a freight terminal, to deal with a surge in trade in the wake of Brexit (see further reading).