Ørsted Exits Canadian Offshore Wind Partnership, Puts Focus on US

Ørsted and Naikun Wind Energy Group have decided not to pursue further a joint development agreement for the Haida Energy Field Offshore Wind Project in British Columbia, Canada, and to end partnership discussions.

Ørsted (formerly DONG Energy) and NaiKun signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) in September 2017 which gave Orsted the exclusive rights to negotiate a joint development agreement for the 396MW Haida Energy Field and explore the potential for establishing a long-term partnership with NaiKun.

“Since the formation of the partnership in September of 2017, progress has been made in the development of the project, but it is still in the development phase in a less mature market compared to others like the U.S. east coast,” said Thomas Brostrom, President of Ørsted North America.

“Ørsted believes that the business is for the time being best served by focusing our efforts on our rapidly expanding U.S. portfolio. We are thankful to NaiKun for the opportunity, and we look forward to future possibilities in Canada and will continue to follow the market closely.”

According to NaiKun, the Haida Energy Field is at an advanced stage of development with environmental approvals from the Provincial and Federal Governments and agreements in place with key suppliers and First Nations. Given its development status, construction can begin within two years of the award of an electricity purchase agreement.

The project is located in Hecate Strait, between Haida Gwaii and Prince Rupert on the British Columbia mainland, and is said to have some of the strongest, most-consistent winds in the world and comprises of a 550-square kilometer area.

Michael O’Connor, CEO of NaiKun, said: “We would like to thank Ørsted for assisting us in continuing to develop the project over the last 12 months and wish them well with their future endeavors. NaiKun is in current discussion with interested alternate partners who are familiar with the wind resource and the development that NaiKun has progressed over the past many years, including the accomplishments of the last year. With the industrial development on the North Coast of British Columbia, and the growing demand and support for Renewable Energy, there are compelling reasons for the project to proceed to the development stage.''