GDF SUEZ and EDP Renewables join forces in view of the next French offshore wind energy tender

GDF SUEZ and EDP Renewables have signed an agreement to participate jointly in the next public tender for offshore wind projects in France, whose final purpose is the development and installation of a total of 1,000 MW in French waters – 500 MW in Le Tréport (Haute-Normandie) and 500 MW close to the islands of Yeu and Noirmoutier (Pays-de-la-Loire).

The consortium has signed on an industrial partnership with AREVA as regards the design and the construction of off-shore wind turbines. AREVA benefits from an outstanding track record in this activity thanks to the operation of wind turbines in the offshore field Alpha Ventus in the North Sea since 2009 and thanks to the on-going deployment of 600 MW offshore projects.

By means of this ambitious partnership, GDF SUEZ and EDP Renewables wish to execute profitable and exemplary projects in conjunction with all stakeholders. These new offshore wind farms will contribute significantly to re-industrialisation and participate in the development of an industrial sector in France which will benefit training and employment. The development of these wind farms will at all times respect local heritage, landscapes and tourism and contemplates support for the fishing sector and concrete measures for the environment and maritime safety.

GDF SUEZ and EDP Renewables possess recognised experience and complementary know-how in the renewable energy sector, in the management of major industrial projects and in the offshore industry construction. The two groups currently hold 36,000 MW of installed capacity of renewable energy (onshore wind power, hydraulic, biomass, solar) and are in the process of adding an additional 7,000 MW. GDF SUEZ is the leading producer of wind energy in France (with more than 1,200 MW capacity from over 100 wind farms), in Belgium and in Portugal. EDP Renewables is the third producer of wind power in the world with more than 8,000 MW of installed capacity (of which 314 MW in 29 farms in France).

GDF SUEZ and EDP Renewables also benefit from an oustanding track record and know how on the entire wind power value chain : from research, to project development, building operation and maintenance.

In offshore wind projects, GDF SUEZ and EDP Renewables are currently developing 15 projects amounting to a total capacity of up to 5,000 MW. EDP Renewables is co-owner of 2 offshore sites and is currently testing « windfloat » the first floating wind turbine, off the Portuguese coast. GDF SUEZ is also involved in the 450 MW, « Mermaid offshore wind farm project » located off the Belgian coast.

The offers will be assessed by the French State according to technical, financial, industrial, social and environmental criteria. The tenders will be submitted to the French Regulatory Commission of Energy by November 29. A governmental decision is expected in 2014.