The most important port construction project that the two-city state of Bremen will implement this decade is making good progress: representatives of BLG LOGISTICS and the port management company bremenports have now signed the operating contract for the 25-hectare Offshore Terminal Bremerhaven (OTB). “We are pleased to have found a competent partner in BLG for the long-term operation of the new loading zone,” stated Ekkehart Siering, Bremen’s State Councillor for Ports.
“The facility for the pre-assembly and transhipment of offshore wind turbines can be available by 2019,” said Siering. “The OTB guarantees short distances between the industrial production and shipment. This will significantly strengthen Bremerhaven’s reputation as a location for the offshore business. It will simultaneously make a major contribution to the successful implementation of the national changeover to green power by reducing the high logistics costs involved in the generation of energy from offshore wind farms.”
“We believe that the OTB offers excellent transhipment facilities for the entire offshore wind industry,” comments Frank Dreeke, Chairman of the BLG Board. “We are not only thinking of new wind farms, but of the growing number of existing wind farms that will require maintenance in future, as well as the regular need for repairs. Thanks to its expertise in this sector, BLG is one of the leading European providers of logistics services for offshore wind turbines. We are delighted that we can put the experience we have acquired in this business to good use for the OTB and the Federal Land of Bremen.”
bremenports GmbH & Co. KG was commissioned with the planning and implementation of the new terminal by the Senate department. “Our avowed aim was to have the new terminal operated by an experienced logistics company,” said Robert Howe, Managing Director of bremenports. “As a long-serving player in the offshore wind energy and heavy lift logistics market, BLG undeniably has the necessary experience.
A Europe-wide tender procedure was conducted to find an operator for the OTB. BLG will operate the OTB for 30 years. The contract signed between the Federal Land of Bremen and BLG grants BLG a concession to operate the terminal at its own expense and risk. In return, the logistics company will pay a user fee to Bremen.
The planned operating concept for the terminal draws on BLG’s experience as a provider of logistics services for the offshore wind industry: since 2012, BLG has offered an interim solution for the storage and transhipment of wind turbines on a section of Bremerhaven’s Auto Terminal known as the ABC peninsula, where the company was also involved in the erection of offshore wind farms such as “Global Tech 1” and “Borkum West”. In the course of that work, it developed and successfully implemented innovative logistics solutions for the industry.
Work on the OTB started at the end of 2015 with the installation of geotextile bags at the foot of the dyke. This was followed by clearing the woodland on the borders of the airport site in January. “Work is proceeding according to schedule,” said Howe. Munitions detection and clearance will be completed by the end of April.
Howe said he was convinced that “we shall be able to hand over the new wind energy terminal to BLG at the end of 2018/beginning of 2019.” With costs reaching a total of EUR 180 million, the terminal is one of the largest infrastructure projects of the decade in the Federal Land of Bremen. Once it is in operation, two to three jack-up vessels will be able to operate at the approx. 500-metre long quay.
In addition to the importance of the OTB for Bremerhaven’s economy and ongoing efforts to develop the southern part of Fischereihafen into a leading hub for the European offshore business, the OTB will also play a key role in Bremen’s strategy for achieving the European climate protection targets, which were recently corroborated by the international community at the World Climate Summit in Paris.