Power for 20,000 homes as Arab renewable energy firm and Norwegian oil giant develop Scottish floating wind farm project
AN ARAB-NORWEGIAN partnership to invest and develop in a windfarm off the coast of Peterhead has been secured this week and seeks to start generating energy by winter of 2017-18.
Statoil, the Norwegian state-owned oil giant has sold 25 per cent of its original stake in the Hywind Scotland offshore floating wind park to Masdar, a renewable energy company from Abu Dhabi.
When completed the farm will have the energy potential to power up to 20,000 homes with electricity.
“The objective of the Hywind Scotland pilot park is to demonstrate cost efficient and low-risk solutions for future commercial-scale floating wind farms.” Irene Rummelhoff
Speaking about their recent purchase to CommonSpace Mohamed Al Ramahi, the chief executive officer of Masdar, said: “For sure – it’s an exciting time. We’re excited to forge a team with a mission to invest seriously into the energies that will secure economic and political stability in the future.
“I’m sure for the Scottish economy this is also good news, for us to prove our expertise in this partnership is key. We want to develop the world’s first large-scale floating wind farm, and to build on our partnership with Statoil.
“The project represents the next stage in the evolution of the offshore wind industry, combining the project management experience and technical expertise of one of the world’s largest offshore energy players – and our own capabilities in renewable energy development acquired over the last decade in the UK and international markets.”
However, there have been industry rumours that the reason Statoil sold part of its share to Masdar relates to concern at the Norwegian firm about the amount of riskit may be exposed to when building wind power installations. However, the company has told CommonSpace that the fact it still retains 75 per cent is proof of its faith in the future of renewables and specifically wind power in Scotland and the North Sea.
“We’re excited to forge a team with a mission to invest seriously into the energies that will secure economic and political stability in the future.” Mohamed Al Ramahi
Initially spanning over four square kilometers and positioned 25km offshore from Peterhead, the farm will supply power through cables buried underground.
Irene Rummelhoff, who is Statoil’s executive vice-president for new energy solutions, emphasised the importance of the decision by Statoil to continue diversifying the source of their electricity generation.
She said: “Hywind Scotland pilot park has the potential to open new markets for renewable energy production not just in Scotland but worldwide. When it opens it will be an example globally. With Masdar onboard as a strong strategic partner we are teaming up with a company with high ambitions within renewable energy.
“The objective of the Hywind Scotland pilot park is to demonstrate a cost-efficient and low-risk way of building future commercial-scale floating wind farms. This will further increase the global market potential for offshore wind energy, contributing to realising Statoil’s ambition of profitable growth in renewable energy and other low-carbon solutions.”
Picture courtesy of Larsen Hirth
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