France Approves Two Pilot Floaters

The French Environment and Energy Management Agency (ADEME) has approved two floating wind pilot projects as part of the country’s call for tenders for the development of floating wind launched last year.

Image for illustrative purposes only. Source: DCNS

The two project approved by the ministry are the 24MW project in the Gruissan area, some 15 kilometres off the Mediterranean coast, led by the Quadran Group, and the 24MW project in the Groix area in Brittany led by Eolfi and CGN.

Both projects will comprise four turbines, the ministry said.

The French energy minister, Ségolène Royal, said that these projects, the first of their kind in France, will contribute to the industrial development of their host regions. The projects will also receive ”support for investment in the future investment program and a guaranteed purchase price for electricity,” Royal said.

Other projects under this call are still being investigated, Royal said, and the additional winners of the call for tender will be announced in September.

ADEME issued the call for floating wind project proposals in August 2015. The floating wind farms are to have three to six turbines, with turbines having a capacity of at least 5MW.

The call identified four areas as the most favourable for the development of floating wind farms: off the island of Groix, off the town of Gruissan, off Faraman lighthouse, and Leucate in the Gulf of Lion.

In total, five developers have reportedly submitted a total of eight bids within the call for proposals.

Engie, EDP Renewables, Caisse des Dépôts and Eiffage submitted a bid to build a pilot floating wind farm of up to 36MW in capacity at the Leucate site at the beginning of April 2016.

By mid-April, Eolfi Offshore France, a joint venture between Eolfi and CGN European Energy Company, submitted a proposal to ADEME for the construction of a floating wind farm off the island of Groix, comprising up to six 6MW Haliade offshore wind turbines.

Apart from the island of Groix, Eolfi Offshore France has reportedly submitted bids for floating farms off Leucate and Faraman lighthouse.

Quadran is said to be interested in the Leucate and the Gruissan site, with Arkoila submitting a bid for the latter as well.

EDF Energies Nouvelles is reportedly interested in developing a floating wind farm off Faraman.

Offshore WIND Staff