Equinor Sets Sights On Gigawatt-Scale Floating Offshore Wind Projects in Celtic Sea

Equinor has disclosed its interest in developing gigawatt-scale floating offshore wind in the Celtic Sea, with the upcoming Celtic Sea floating wind seabed leasing round in view.

The Crown Estate is planning a seabed leasing round in the Celtic Sea in 2023.

As the developer and soon-to-be operator of two of the world’s first floating offshore wind farms, Equinor said it views new floating opportunities in the Celtic Sea with great interest.

Project development areas are being prepared by The Crown Estate for the development of gigawatt-scale floating offshore wind projects.

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The Celtic Sea seabed leasing round aims to facilitate the development of the floating offshore wind industry in the UK and encourage investments in the UK supply chain.

”Our team is working hard to mature our plans in Wales and South West England, as engagement with local communities is critical to Equinor’s project development of offshore wind. Equinor is highly experienced at developing floating wind: we have installed the world’s first floating wind turbine, the world’s first floating offshore wind farm and are now building the world’s largest floating wind farm. We are committed to industrialising floating offshore wind and the Celtic Sea is an optimal region for further development of this important technology,” Catherine Maloney, Head of Business Development, UK Offshore Wind, said.

Central to the Celtic Sea seabed leasing round is a focus on environmental and social value creation, respect for the marine environment, engagement with local communities and stakeholders, and development of a competitive floating offshore wind supply chain, Equinor said.

The company added that it has conducted a comprehensive site selection process in the Celtic Sea and is maturing its site selection through aerial surveys. In the Celtic Sea region, Equinor said it intends to work with all stakeholders to develop floating offshore wind projects that create shared value for local communities, and initiate opportunities for the regional supply chain to advance as a competitive hub for floating offshore wind.

Equinor’s 30 MW Hywind Scotland floating wind farm has provided power for five years, achieving a UK-leading capacity factor of 54 per cent across its lifespan.

Equinor is also currently constructing the 88 MW Hywind Tampen project in Norway, which will be the largest floating offshore wind farm in the world when completed in 2023.

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Photo: Hywind Scotland; Photo: Øyvind Gravås / Woldcam - Equinor ASA