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Latest round offers new potential for UK offshore wind leasing

by RES | Nov 08, 2020 | Reading time: 3 min

At over 14GW of operating and in construction projects, the UK has the largest offshore wind capacity in the world, which is set to expand with the fourth leasing round for offshore wind.

The Crown Estate (TCE) is unlocking new areas of seabed for the generation of low-carbon energy for millions more homes by 2030. It is making at least 7GW of new seabed rights available off the coast of England and Wales up to a possible maximum of 8.5GW.

TCE is currently assessing invitations to tender as part of the next phase in the leasing process – a multi-cycle bidding event due to start in the coming months.

Round four comes hot on the heels of TCEs August 2019 award of development rights to extend seven pre-existing constructed projects, which subject to individual project consents, potentially represent a further 2.85GW of generating capacity.

Moreover, the Scottish government has just published its strategic plan identifying sustainable options for the future development of commercial-scale offshore wind energy in Scotland, which will add to the overall potential for the UK.

A variety of renewable generation, including onshore and offshore is required if the UK is to meet its target of net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, which was secured through the Climate Change Act 2008 (2050 Target Amendment) Order 2019 following the declaration by UK Parliament and the devolved administrations of a ‘climate emergency’ in spring 2019.

With over 30 years’ experience in the renewables industry in the UK, Europe and North America, RES is well placed to assist our clients in realising the UK’s offshore wind potential.

Our UK&I Offshore team has recently completed or is currently working on the following projects:

  • Assisting the SPR East Anglia ONE project through post-consent compliance and construction and the proposed East Anglia ONE North and East Anglia TWO projects through pre-application and the current application determination phase.
  • Managing OFTOs across the UK and Ireland, including Walney Extension and Galloper.

We provide integrated development, engineering, construction and O&M services for utility-scale renewable energy projects as a defined package of work or as part of the owner’s project team. We have the full range of in-house capabilities required to deliver each of the project phases, from initial site selection, through development, construction and O&M, which allows for cost-effective, innovative solutions that can make the difference between project failure and success.

As the fourth leasing round for offshore wind in the UK continues, we encourage those in the market who are interested to get in touch with RES for advice and guidance on how they can play their part in contributing to a greener future.

Please contact Robert Fradley, Head of Offshore for UK&I – [email protected] for further information.

France focuses on offshore future

With nearly 20,000 km of coastline, France is the second largest offshore wind energy field in Europe after the UK. Seven offshore wind farm projects have already been awarded in 2012, 2014 and 2019, and five more are expected between 2022 and 2023.

And France is set for further growth. The objective set by the Multiannual Energy Plan established by the French government is to reach an installed capacity of bottom-fixed and floating offshore wind power of between 5.2 and 6.2 GW by 2028. This new target was introduced at the start of 2020, up from the range of 4.7 – 5.2 GW initially envisaged.

Several offshore wind farm projects will therefore be put out to tender in France in the coming years. Our French Offshore team is currently working on the following projects which will contribute to the country’s national goal:

  • a bottom-fixed offshore wind farm project with a total capacity of 1000 MW in Normandy, 
  • a floating offshore wind farm project with a total capacity of 250 MW, to be completed by a 500 MW extension, in South Brittany, 
  • 3 more iprojects, including two floating projects in South of France, followed by a target of 1GW/year from 2024

Once partnerships are concluded, the administrative process will consist of the pre-qualification, the competitive dialog and the bidding phase. It is expected that the award for Normandy, and maybe for Brittany, will be announced in Q1 2022, before the French presidential elections.

RES, a partner in the development of the offshore wind farm near Saint-Brieuc in Brittany, sold its shares in the project to Iberdrola earlier this year. Iberdrola now owns 100% of the capital and will ensure the execution of the operational phase. RES continues to work on the project as a service provider, continuing the collaboration. In addition, RES will focus on its participation in future offshore wind tenders in France.

Please contact Delphine Robineau, Offshore Wind Manager at RES, [email protected] for further information.

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