Great Blue

Welcome to the blue capital of the UK, where 21st century innovation and opportunity is built on centuries of maritime expertise.

We are leaders in offshore energy, marine technologies, ocean science, sustainable aquaculture and the future of our marine and maritime legacy.

Powering the future

As the only region with access to all offshore resources, including wave, wind, and tidal, the Great South West offers unparalleled potential for renewable energy production.

The region boasts a robust infrastructure of major ports and an extensive supply chain network working with 22 research institutions. We are home to several test sites available to test and develop new wave, tidal, and wind devices.

Floating offshore wind in the Celtic Sea has also opened up significant opportunities for supply chain investment, with huge potential to unlock up to 4GW of new clean energy capacity by 2035 and power nearly 4 million homes.

Advancing innovation in marine autonomy

Our marine autonomy sector is leading the development of technologies for offshore energy, aquaculture, and maritime transport, with a predicted £103 billion market by 2030. With a variation in water depths, ability to deploy marine autonomous platforms, and instrumentation in the Smart Sound, Plymouth could become the proving ground for data collection systems and future autonomous shipping.

Elsewhere, world-class facilities including the Marine Business Technology Centre, Marine-I and Defence BattleLab are driving innovation, and the area’s supply chain provides opportunities to test and deploy technologies in real-world settings.

Unlocking the mysteries of our oceans

Our unique coastal environment provides researchers with access to a diverse range of marine ecosystems and habitats, making it an ideal location for conducting oceanographic research. The region is home to several internationally recognised ocean science institutions, including the Plymouth Marine Laboratory, Cefas and the Marine Biological Association, which collaborate with local universities to drive innovation in marine technology, renewable energy, and coastal management.

Building the boats of tomorrow

Around 25% of the UK’s marine manufacturing jobs are in the South West, where we are home to international companies developing the technologies and systems for commercial boat building and defence industries. Some of the key players in our area include Princess Yachts in Plymouth, Sunseeker International in Poole, and Pendennis in Cornwall, developing cutting edge technologies, generating thousands of jobs, and supporting a global supply chain.

Developing sustainable aquaculture

Aquaculture is projected to be the prime source of seafood by 2030, creating a global market of £200 billion. For the Great South West, aquaculture provides opportunities to diversify farming and improve the livelihoods derived from inshore fishing. The region's natural resources and research facilities make it an ideal location to support the increasing demand for sustainable seafood production.

We are home to several key players including Wester Ross Salmon, the Southern Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority, and the Centre for Sustainable Aquaculture Futures. There is a ready supply of world class science, technology and skills, with industry training programmes developing talent through our higher education providers and Centres of Scientific Excellence.

Harnessing the potential of the blue economy

The blue economy already creates over $4 trillion of value worldwide, and is expected to be worth an additional £2 billion to the Great South West by 2035. The marine sector in the Great South West is at the leading edge of several key technologies, and there are numerous opportunities to increase the share of global markets.

We are working to develop our export potential, including marine autonomy - a global market forecast to be worth $136 billion over the next 15 years - and our unrivalled opportunities for clean energy production.