Consortium to bid in third licence round for UK offshore wind farms


Four leading international energy companies have joined forces to bid to win exclusive rights to develop wind farms under the terms of Zone Development Agreements as part of The Crown Estate’s third licence round for UK offshore wind farms. 

Airtricity, whose parent company is Scottish and Southern Energy Plc, RWE npower renewables, the UK subsidiary of RWE Innogy, and two of Norway’s largest companies, Statkraft and StatoilHydro, have formed a consortium to combine their respective expertise, know-how and financial capacity to prepare for a joint bid for Round 3.
Called Forewind, the consortium combines extensive experience of international offshore project delivery and renewables development, construction, asset management and operations, with UK utility expertise spanning the complete electricity value chain.

Project Manager Peter Raftery said that the consortium draws on exceptional organisational resources, financial strength, technical knowledge and a proven track record of offshore project delivery, which combined prepare it well for the extraordinary challenges facing Round 3 developers.

“Each of the four consortium members – all leading players in their own right – recognise that by joining forces we have an ability to make a significant contribution to the future of wind energy in the UK and demonstrate our commitment to the continuing development of offshore wind,” he said.

The cooperation will leverage the companies’ complementary skills and capabilities in preparing applications and, in the case of being awarded one or more ZDAs, in the development, construction and operation of Round 3 wind farms.

The companies are cooperating on the submission of a single, joint bid for selected Round 3 zones.

Important market
One of the greatest markets for offshore wind power the UK currently has nearly 400 MW of offshore wind capacity operating. UK authorities have previously in Rounds 1 and 2 of the programme allocated zones for offshore wind power, and now, under Round 3, they are aiming at another 25 000 MW. This is almost the same as the total wind power capacity in Norway. The consortium’s application to UK authorities will be submitted by 3 March.

The companies involved in the bid are:

Statkraft is Europe’s largest generator of renewable energy, with a total installed capacity of more than 14,800 MW. The company develops and generates hydropower, wind power, gas power, solar power and district heating, and is a major player on the European energy exchanges. Statkraft opened its first wind farm in 2002 and now owns and operates three onshore wind farms in Norway with a total installed capacity of 244 MW. In the UK, Statkraft has one hydropower plant in operation in Wales, one wind farm under construction in Wales and planning consent for another in Scotland. The company has around 3000 staff in more than 20 countries, and is wholly owned by the Norwegian state. Statkraft plans to invest nearly £10 billion in clean energy by 2015. The world needs pure energy and this is what Statkraft delivers – every day.

RWE npower renewables
RWE npower renewables (an RWE Innogy company) is the renewable energy company of RWE, one of Europe’s five largest utility companies. RWE Innogy plans, builds and operates renewable power generation facilities and is committed to investing at least €’801 billion in renewables every year until 2012 in the UK and Continental Europe. The expansion of onshore and offshore wind power is a key driver behind RWE Innogy’s goal to have 4,500 MW in operation or construction by 2012.
RWE npower renewables is the UK subsidiary of RWE Innogy and is the UK’s leading wind farm operator with 423.2MW of installed capacity, including the UK’s first major offshore wind farm, North Hoyle.

Scottish and Southern Energy/Airtricity
Airtricity is a world leading renewable energy company developing and operating wind farms across Europe. Its parent company is Scottish and Southern Energy (SSE). SSE is one of the largest energy companies in the UK and is involved in the generation, transmission, distribution and supply of electricity; the storage, distribution and supply of gas; telecommunications; contracting; and other energy services. As well as being the second largest supplier of energy in the UK with 9 million customers, SSE is also the leading renewable energy company in the UK, with a total operating portfolio of renewable energy of 2000MW. SSE’s portfolio shows its commitment, past, present and future, to tackling climate change and delivering secure energy supplies.

With about 29,500 employees in 40 countries, StatoilHydro aims to deliver long-term growth and continue to develop technologies and manage projects that will meet the world’s energy and climate challenges in a sustainable way. Renewable energy is one of StatoilHydro’s major focus areas. The UK offshore wind market is key to the company’s ambition to utilise its extensive experience from complex offshore oil and gas projects to generate value from offshore wind.


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