Wind power pact brings Mitsubishi and green jobs to the UK

Wind power pact brings Mitsubishi & green jobs to the UK The UK is already the world leader in offshore wind power with 600 megawatts of wind capacity and an industry that employs five thousand people. A new partnership with Mitsubishi will add to their clout and has the potential to create thousands of green jobs.

Mitsubishi Power Systems Europe (MPSE) announced plans this week to invest £100m  in a new research and development facility for offshore wind power in Britain. The government made it clear to MPSE that they were dead serious about promoting corporate investment in green energy by kicking in a £30m grant to help them get started. The money comes from a fund dedicated to industrial innovation, job creation, and growth.

MPSE has big plans for the facility along with a four year outline to develop and possibly market offshore turbines. A prototype will be developed in three years while production may start in as few as four.

These turbines won’t be tiny in power or size due to the rocky conditions they face in turbulent waters. The turbines will have blades over 328 feet long and produce over 5 megawatts, more juice than other turbines currently on the market.

If they find success in their new operations, MPSE and the UK could cement themselves as superpowers in offshore wind power production. The government predicts that the friendship could create as many as 1,500 jobs if MPSE starts turbine production.

Jobs are an obvious plus coming out of the partnership but there’s another bright spot. EU energy targets state that the UK needs to get 40% of their electricity from renewable energy by 2020. According to the British Wind and Energy Association, wind energy is on target to contribute up to half of the country’s power by that date. Much of that will be powered by offshore wind turbines which aren’t that common outside of the UK.

It will be interesting to see how Mitsubishi does in their foray into wind energy in the UK. Rust belts states like Michigan and Pennsylvania will be surely watching to see if they can take a similar route to mold their long manufacturing histories into a bright green future.


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