How Scotland and France are strengthening their marine renewable energy ties

In a move to bolster their shared ambitions in decarbonising industry and developing marine renewable energy, a delegation from the Pays de la Loire region, also known as Atlantic France, recently visited Scotland. The team lay out their learnings and next steps in this exclusive op-ed.


How Scotland and France are strengthening their marine renewable energy ties

The learning expedition, which focused on fostering partnerships and exploring business opportunities, highlighted the strong existing ties and the potential for further collaboration in the flourishing marine renewable energy sector.

Powering the Future

Atlantic France boasts impressive credentials. The region is home to the country’s first operational offshore wind farm, a testament to its pioneering spirit and technical expertise. With over 2,200 jobs in the sector and annual sales of €860m, Atlantic France is firmly established as France’s leading region for marine renewable energy.

The region’s long history in shipbuilding, exemplified by the renowned Chantiers de l’Atlantique, has provided a solid foundation for the development of marine renewable energy technologies. Nantes Saint-Nazaire Port, the largest on France’s Atlantic coast, serves as a crucial hub for the industry, offering extensive logistics capabilities and a strategic location.

Strengthening Ties

The delegation’s visit to Scotland had two primary objectives: to better understand the organisation and service offerings of Scottish ports, particularly in the offshore wind industry, and to collect feedback on the necessary adaptations required for large-scale offshore capacities. This knowledge will be invaluable as the region’s Eole project, a floating offshore wind initiative, takes shape.

During their time in Scotland, the delegation visited key industry hubs, including Aberdeen and Inverness. They met with representatives from Montrose, Aberdeen, Nigg and Ardersier ports, the Net Zero Technology Centre, the Energy Transition Zone, the Floating Offshore Wind Centre of Excellence, and various developers and clusters. These interactions allowed for the exchange of best practices and the identification of potential partnership opportunities, particularly in the floating offshore business sector.

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The bonnie banks of the Atlantic: Seanergy 2024

As the delegation returns to France, they extend an invitation to their UK counterparts to visit the region and discover its wealth of marine renewable energy offerings. A key event on the horizon is the Seanergy 2024 Forum, taking place from 26th to 28th June 2024 in Nantes, which provides an ideal platform for showcasing the region’s expertise and exploring new avenues for collaboration. Kicking off these concerted efforts will be the International Delegation Reception on 25th June, organised by Atlantic France, where UK-French discussions on joint initiatives will take centre stage.

“The Atlantic France region is at the forefront of marine renewable energy development in France,” says Nindy Bhari, Trade Specialist for Energy Transition at Scottish Development International who met the delegation in Aberdeen. “Their visit to Scotland has strengthened our existing ties and opened up exciting possibilities for future partnerships.”

“With a shared commitment to decarbonising industry and a passion for harnessing the power of the seas, the Atlantic France-UK partnership is poised to play a pivotal role in shaping the future of marine renewable energy. We look forward to welcoming our Scottish and UK friends to Seanergy 2024 and demonstrating the full breadth of our capabilities in this dynamic sector,” concludes Claire Hugues, Vice-President for Maritime Affairs for the Regional Council of Pays de la Loire.

Seanergy 2024 visitor registration is open. If you have plans to pioneer the global energy transition and develop solutions that will shape the future of marine renewable energy, RSVP to Agathe Corre or Michael Yates to attend the International Delegation Reception the day before the show or visit Business Solutions Atlantic France’s website.

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