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Sven Utermöhlen, CEO Wind Offshore:
“As one of the global leading players in offshore wind, as RWE we are determined to contribute to the growth ambitions for offshore wind of the French government and to
expand our market presence in France. We are delighted to be selected as qualified bidder for the floating offshore wind project in South Brittany. Our pioneering work in floating, combined with a 20 years’ track record in offshore wind and a very experienced team in France ensure that RWE is very well placed to supply green energy from floating offshore wind in close cooperation with local stakeholders."
RWE Renewables France has been selected as an eligible bidder for the upcoming French tender for a commercial floating offshore wind project off the coast of South Brittany with a capacity of up to 270 megawatts (MW). This has been announced by the French Ministry for Ecological Transition. RWE is now looking forward to participate in the competitive dialogue as the next stage of the tender process.
The floating offshore wind project in South Brittany will be the first commercial floating project in France. It will be located off the island Belle-Île and Île de Groix in South Brittany and installed in water depth of approximately 90 metres. The final floating design for the project would be determined during the development phase. As in other European markets, RWE would closely cooperate with local stakeholders and national supply chain partners to deliver local benefits, jobs and investments, while investing in new renewable energy.
RWE is one of the global leaders and most experienced players in offshore wind, with 20 years of experience in successfully developing, building and operating offshore wind projects. The company currently operates 17 offshore wind farms in five countries with a total capacity of around 2.4 GW (RWE pro-rata share), and is developing and constructing some of the world’s most advanced offshore wind farms. Floating offshore opens up the possibility of deploying offshore wind projects in region with deeper waters like in France and thus, contributes to capturing the full potential of renewable power generation. Together with partners, RWE is forging ahead with three high-profile demonstration projects in Norway, Spain and the US, each based on different concepts.
France is one of RWE’s key strategic markets to grow its renewable energy portfolio. In 2020, RWE acquired an European onshore wind and solar development pipeline with a total capacity of 2.7 GW. The bulk of the new portfolio - 1.9 GW - is based in France. Currently, RWE is building three onshore wind farms in France: Les Pierrots (26 MW), located 250 km south of Paris, is on track to reach full commissioning in autumn 2021. The other two construction projects in the north of France - Les Hauts Bouleaux (18 MW) and Martinpuich (15 MW) - are planned to be commissioned in 2022.
Floating offshore wind at RWE
RWE is pioneering three floating offshore wind projects with partners. The most advanced project is the TetraSpar Demonstrator project in Norway with partners Stiesdal Offshore Technologies, Shell and TEPCO Renewables, deploying a tubular steel structure with a suspended keel. The 3.6 megawatt turbine has already been deployed on site, 16 kilometres off the Norwegian coast near Stavanger in waters as deep as 200 metres. Recently, the floating turbine was connected with a transmission cable and commissioning will start soon. This milestone was achieved thanks to the cooperation with experienced partner companies, including the French Bourbon Subsea Services. In Spain, RWE is working with Saitec Offshore Technologies on the DemoSATH project, a concrete twin-hull barge structure, made of modular, pre-fabricated components. The design has a single point of mooring, which means it aligns itself to the current and wave direction. It is expected to go into operation mid-2022. For the New England Aqua Ventus project in the US, RWE is in partnership with Diamond Offshore Wind and the University of Maine to deploy a concrete semi-submersible structure. The project will use a 11 MW turbine and is expected to go into operation in 2024.