After the approval today by the Council of Ministers of the Roadmap for the Development of offshore wind and offshore energy in Spain, the wind sector positively values ??this decisive step to promote floating offshore wind projects in our country
The Roadmap considers offshore wind as a sector with great potential to contribute to the Just Transition.
Spain has an optimal base to lead the development of floating offshore wind, given its current industrial capacities for wind energy, its strategic geographical position, its competitiveness, and its research centers. The Roadmap shows a sufficient level of ambition to lead the floating offshore wind value chain and improve the socio-economic activity of the coastal areas where it will be installed. The Roadmap proposes an integrative approach that contemplates the deployment of renewable facilities at sea in tune with fishing activities and encouraging their participation during the development of projects.
A first analysis of the Roadmap leads us to assess its approval with optimism. It is important to highlight the most significant aspects for the development of offshore wind in Spain:
Objectives are set for the installation of floating offshore wind power by 2030 between 1 and 3 GW. The Canary Islands are designated as the location for the initial deployment of the first floating offshore wind projects. It plans to mobilize at least 200 million euros of public budget in support of the technological development of offshore wind, within the framework of the PRTR. The need to provide a coordinated access and connection framework with the POEMs is raised, which allows full integration into the electrical system of offshore wind projects, which provides predictability for developers and optimizes investments and management methods to minimize costs. costs to consumers. The importance of POEMs as a backbone of the organization of activities at sea is reinforced. The Roadmap takes advantage of the Sectorial Agenda of the Wind Industry, which is part of the Industrial Policy Strategy of Spain 2030.
However, there are aspects that need to be accelerated by the wind sector that stand out as pending to be addressed soon and that with certain adjustments would place Spain in an even more competitive position:
Taking into account the 7-year development deadlines for offshore wind projects, it is necessary to accelerate as much as possible the updating of the new regulatory framework for the first half of 2022 in order to meet the objectives of the Roadmap itself and maintain a rate of progress comparable to that of neighboring countries. In addition, speeding up the deadlines would help to arrive on time for the start-up of the projects linked to the reconstruction funds (2026), and thus be able to take advantage of the funds allocated to offshore wind. As for onshore wind, it is important to have an auction calendar, with dates and volumes of MW to be installed, which provides the necessary visibility to the industry and developers, to undertake projects and attract the necessary investments.
In Spain we have 7,661 km of coastline. An extension that offers the country the opportunity to take advantage of the high seas wind. Due to the characteristics of our coast, the most suitable offshore wind technology is floating offshore wind. The floating offshore wind has been developed thanks to the capacity and knowledge of our industry.
Spain can lead the development of this technology thanks to its industrial capacity, its geographical position and its competitiveness. The development of floating offshore wind takes advantage of the advantages of new locations far from the coast, with capacity factors that exceed 4,000 equivalent hours, and that allow a decrease in visual and environmental impact.
The Spanish industry has been leading the manufacture of wind components for years, which have been exported for installation in offshore wind farms in multiple locations in Europe and the US. The competition of Spanish companies has been reflected internationally with the demands that offshore technology requires to provide energy with safety and quality of service. An example of industrial capacity is that of the 13 floating wind projects that have been installed in the world, 11 of them have been manufactured in Spain, which shows the great industrial capacities in offshore wind.
On the other hand, Spain is a world leader in R&D in the development of prototypes of flotation solutions for floating offshore wind power. The wind sector has the know-how throughout the entire offshore wind value chain. This Roadmap will allow to open the national market with a reasonable size to drive the entire supply chain focused on floating offshore wind.
The floating offshore wind strategy shows benefits for our economy and our society. We must approach the strategy at the right pace, with an ambitious vision to take advantage of the economic and industrial opportunity it provides, respecting marine biodiversity and conducting a constructive dialogue with sectors that have been living from the sea for years. The fit of the offshore wind farms in the marine space must be done allowing their use by all within the great challenge of the Blue Economy, with scrupulous respect for the environment.
For the development of offshore wind in Spain it is necessary to take full advantage of the synergies it offers with other sectors such as shipbuilding, repair, operation and maintenance services, associated logistics, etc .; but also indirect such as the brand of tourist image and destination of quality and sustainability, comparable to northern European countries that are already a reference in this field, etc. All these synergies already exist, we simply have to link them and put them in value.
Offshore wind in the world
In the world, in 2030, the total power of offshore wind will be 228 GW. In Europe, the forecast for the same year is 60 GW. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), offshore wind will account for half of wind generation in Europe in 2040.
Worldwide, in 2020, 6.1 GW of offshore wind have been installed.
The European Union has made an ambitious commitment to the incorporation of offshore wind into its decarbonisation strategy for 2050. The European Strategic Plan for Energy Technologies (SETPlan) adopted as a strategic objective to consolidate the global leadership of the EU in offshore wind energy and At the end of 2020, the European Commission approved the European Marine Renewable Energy Strategy. This strategy establishes targets of more than 60 GW in 2030 and 300 GW in 2050.
There are currently 25 GW of installed power in Europe, with 2.9 GW installed in 2020 despite the pandemic. Among the countries that have installed the most are the United Kingdom, France, Denmark, the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium.