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Renewables training hub opened

A project which has been designed to find ways of cutting the cost of building offshore wind farms will be extended, the Government has announced.

The technology development initiative, known as the Offshore Wind Accelerator, is a collaboration between the Government’s Carbon Trust and companies which produce wind power.

Energy and Climate Change Minister David Kidney made the announcement as he officially opened a “training tower” at a renewable energy centre for environmental science students and technicians who work in the industry at height.

Mr Kidney met business people and academics for discussions about jobs and training in the renewable energy sector.

“As we build larger wind farms, in deeper waters, further from shore, we must work with industry to find and develop vital new technologies. The funding I’m announcing today will help companies drive down costs and share resources, which will benefit the entire industry here in the UK,” the minister said.

The training facility is based at Narec (New and Renewable Energy Centre) in Blyth in the North East, where Northumberland College students demonstrated to Mr Kidney what the tower will be used for.

The Carbon Trust’s Tom Delay said: “We have seen many promising concepts and innovative solutions to the technology challenges that the offshore wind industry faces as it moves further offshore and this additional funding will help to scale up our activity and enable us to continue to drive costs out of this key technology.”

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