Norway Ponders 3.5GW Offshore Wind Move

The Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy announced plans to potentially open two areas for offshore wind development with a combined capacity of up to 3.5GW.

The Ministry will send a proposal to open a hearing on the Utsira North area off the coast of Rogaland before summer. In addition, input will be requested for the Southern North Sea II area.

The Utsira Nord area would have the capacity of between 500MW and 1,500MW. The area is suitable for floating wind turbines, Norway’s Minister of Petroleum and Energy Kjell-Børge Freiberg said.

”I would ask for input on whether we should also open the area Southern North Sea II, which is close to the territorial boundary with Denmark,” Freiberg said, adding that the wind farm or wind farms at the Southern North Sea II area, with a combined capacity of between 1GW and 2GW, could provide a connection to the European continental grid.

The Norwegian government presented a strategy for floating wind power in the state budget for 2018. The goal of the strategy is for Norwegian companies to increase exports of goods and services to this industry.

”Offshore wind power offers great opportunities for Norwegian companies. Norway can build on unique experience from the oil and gas industry, shipping, shipbuilding, and renewable energy. The cost of wind power has fallen a lot, and it is likely that it will fall further,” said Freiberg.

As part of the consultation, the MPE will also propose a regulation to the marine energy law. The regulations will provide further provisions on the licensing process, the Ministry said.

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