Shell plans to bid in Norway’s offshore wind energy tender

Shell teamed up with Norwegian utilities BKK and Lyse to bid in the Nordic country’s first offshore wind power tender expected next year, the companies said on Thursday.

Shell has been active in oil and gas extraction on the Norwegian continental shelf for several decades, and like many of its peers sees offshore wind as a cross-over technology in a bid to become carbon neutral in its operations.

“We see Norway as interesting both in the perspective of supplying enough renewable energy to Europa and to develop floating offshore wind energy solutions that can become commercially viable,” said Hessel de Jong, head of Shell’s European offshore wind energy business.

The partners said they were planning to bid to build both floating and bottom-fixed wind turbines on the Norwegian continental shelf.
Norway has designated two North Sea areas – Utsira Nord and Soerlige Nordsjoe II – to build a total of 4.5 gigawatt (GW) of offshore wind power capacity. read more

BKK, based in Bergen, and Lyse, headquartered in Norway’s oil capital Stavanger, are among Norway’s biggest hydropower producers and operators of local power grids.

Norway’s offshore wind plans have attracted a lot of interest from domestic and foreign energy firms, including Equinor, Danish Orsted and BP.

Norway has earmarked two areas in the North Sea to accommodate up to 4.5 gigawatt (GW) of floating and bottom-fixed wind turbine capacity and will identify additional offshore areas for development amid strong interest from energy firms.

Utsira Nord, an area of 1,000 square km (386 square miles), is located northwest of the oil industry capital Stavanger and is seen as suitable for floating wind power.

Soerlige Nordsjoe II, some 2,590 square km and bordering the Danish sector of the North Sea, is suitable for bottom-fixed wind power turbines.

Companies and joint ventures that have confirmed their participation are:

Shell is partnering with local utilities BKK and Lyse to prepare bids for both Utsira Nord and Soerlige Nordsjoe II.

On June 14, British oil major BP announced it will join Norway’s Statkraft and Aker Offshore Wind AOW-E.OL to bid for permits in both areas.

Denmark’s Orsted has formed a consortium with Fred. Olsen Renewables, a subsidiary of Bonheur and utility Hafslund-Eco, which plans to jointly develop offshore wind in both areas.

Equinor will seek acreage in both areas. It is planning a bid with Eni renewables unit Vaargroenn for a floating offshore wind farm at Utsira North and has teamed up with Germany’s RWE and Norsk Hydro for a planned wind farm at Soerlige Nordsjoe II.

Germany’s EnBW and several Norwegian partners, including wholesale and retail food supplier Norgesgruppen, have announced the Norseman Consortia initiative to develop a 1.4 GW wind farm in the Soerlige Nordsjoe II area.

Italy’s Eni and Norway’s HitecVision have formed the Vaargroenn joint venture and seek acreage at Soerlige Nordsjoe II together with utility Agder Energi.

Magnora and TechnipFMC plan to bid for a site at Utsira Nord through their Magnora Offshore Wind partnership.

Deep Wind Offshore, a joint venture of shipping company Knutsen OAS and utilities Haugaland Kraft and Sunnhordland Kraftlag, plans projects for both sites.

Seagust, a joint venture by industrial investment firms Arendals Fossekompani (AFK) and Ferd, is considering bids for both areas.

A joint venture of offshore supply firm NorSea, majority owned by shipping firm Wilhemsen and Belgian offshore wind development firm Parkwind, has said it plans to apply for licences in both areas.