Run Larger, Multi-Site Offshore Wind Tenders, French Energy Commission Recommends to Gov’t
The French Energy Regulatory Commission (CRE) has recommended that the government conducts larger offshore wind tenders, inviting bids for several sites. This is according to the latest update from CRE, which has now published specifications for the country’s AO5 tender for a floating wind farm in southern Brittany.
The deadline for submitting bids under the AO5 tender has now been set to 2 October 2023. The designation of the winner will take place in early 2024.
France announced the launch of the tendering procedure for the 270 MW commercial floating wind project off the coast of southern Brittany in April 2021.
The process is divided into three phases: candidate selection phase, competitive dialogue phase, and tender submission and developer selection phase.
Already in September of that year, the French government completed the first phase and announced ten developers who were pre-qualified to compete in the tender.
The companies then entered the competitive dialogue phase, aimed at reducing project costs, during which the government and the selected developers were discussing draft specifications that also comprised several remarks made by the public during the consultation period.
In March this year, CRE began deliberations to provide an opinion on the draft specifications for the competitive bidding procedure.
On 8 June, CRE published its opinion on the draft specifications as the dialogue phase ended and a review of the specifications was completed.
There are several changes to the specifications that were part of the previous competitive bidding procedure, the AO4 tender for a project off Normandy, which improve the framework of the AO5 project, according to the Energy Regulatory Commission.
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CRE also made several recommendations, in particular on the importance of the sub-criterion that relates to the robustness of the contractual and financial arrangement in the selection of offers.
The Commission also recommended that the government sets up larger calls for tenders, which would encompass several offshore wind farm sites simultaneously, to ensure a sufficient variety of players in the offshore wind power market in France.
The 270 MW project that will be awarded through the AO5 tender will be built off the island Belle-Île and Île de Groix and installed in a water depth of approximately 90 metres.
Planned to be commissioned by 2031, the wind farm will be the first commercial project in France using floating wind technology.
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