RWE Enters Latvian Offshore Wind Market, Finds Local Partner

RWE and Latvenergo, one of the largest power suppliers in the Baltic States, have joined forces to develop, construct, and operate offshore wind projects off the Latvian coast.

A corresponding Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has now been signed between the two companies.

The equal partnership is said to represent a strong combination of experience and expertise in offshore wind development, efficient project delivery, safe operation, and extensive knowledge of the Latvian energy market and power supply in the Baltic States.

The partnership has been forged to support the build-out of offshore wind in order to strengthen Latvia’s energy independence.

According to the National Energy and Climate Plan, Latvia aims to increase its wind capacity from currently approximately 70 MW to 800 MW by 2030.

In addition, the country plans to open the ELWIND tender, a 1 GW cross-border offshore project in collaboration with Estonia.

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Latvian Minister of Economics, Ilze Indriksone, said: ”The sea has a special meaning for us, previously we have generally seen it as an environmental resource, a recreational resource and an opportunity to enjoy nature. Today, the meaning has changed, but it is not gone. That is why the involvement of state-owned companies is more than welcome in research, development and in cooperation with international partners. Concluding agreements in research accelerates our goal of reaching energy security and energy independence.”

RWE operates 18 offshore wind farms in five countries, including Kårehamn off the Swedish coast, the Danish offshore wind farm Rødsand 2, and Arkona, one of the largest offshore wind farms in the German Baltic Sea

In addition, RWE is well advanced in the development of its 350-MW F.E.W. Baltic II wind farm off the Polish coast and is progressing with the development of the 1.6-GW Södra Victoria project off the Swedish coast.

By 2030, RWE intends to grow its offshore wind capacity from currently 3 GW to 8 GW. Globally, RWE is driving an offshore wind development pipeline of 10 GW with secured offshore rights. The focus for further growth is on North America, the Asia Pacific region, and attractive markets in Europe in particular, including the Baltic States, the German energy company said.

Sven Utermöhlen, CEO Offshore Wind of RWE Renewables, said: ”Local industries and creating new, future-proof jobs. Together with our partner Latvenergo we are committed to contributing towards delivering Latvia’s offshore wind ambitions – hand in hand with the local communities and supply chain. We bring more than 20 years of experience and technical expertise in the offshore industry to this partnership.”

Founded in 1939, the state-owned Latvenergo is engaged in the generation and trade of electricity and thermal energy, and distribution of electricity, with approximately half of the electricity generated in
three large-scale hydropower plants.

”The Baltic Sea wind off Latvia’s shores is a national treasure with untapped potential,” Mārtiņš Čakste, Chairman of the Management Board and CEO of Latvenergo, said.

”Going forward, this will undoubtedly increase the energy independence of Latvia and neighbouring countries, and will enable the export of electricity to the growing European electricity market. Latvenergo has 80 years of expertise in renewable energy, as demonstrated by our generation portfolio of hydropower plants and onshore wind and solar farm projects. By effectively harnessing the power of both the Daugava River and the sun, as well as Latvia’s onshore and offshore wind, the country will have its own independent electricity in all types of weather conditions and at lower prices.”

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Photo: RWE (Illustration)