Scotland assesses bids for next gen offshore wind farms

by Liam Turner
An offshore wind turbine

Bids for the next generation of offshore wind farms in Scotland are now being assessed following the passing of the deadline for applications.

Crown Estate Scotland is holding a competitive tender on behalf of ScotWind, the Scottish government’s wind power initiative, and is now examining each application.

Commenting on the bids, Colin Palmer, director of Marine for Crown Estate Scotland, said: “We really appreciate and acknowledge all the time, effort, and investment that has gone into each and every application to ScotWind Leasing.

“We know that there is significant interest in Scotland’s ability to host major offshore wind projects, and our engagement with the sector throughout the development of ScotWind has been clear evidence of that.

“We’ll now look forward to the next stage in the journey, and beginning the work of assessing applications and, ultimately, awarding agreements that can help move some of these exciting potential projects closer to reality.”

The bidders

Offshore energy company Equinor said that, with around half of the sites being floating offshore wind opportunities, it believes the Scottish government is offering a great opportunity to develop large floating offshore wind projects at scale.

Equinor has more than a decade of operating experience from floating offshore wind and has floating wind turbines already deployed and producing electricity at Hywind, off the northeast coast of Scotland.

BP and partner EnBW have applied for a lease area off the east coast of Scotland that could support offshore wind projects with 2.9GW generating capacity.

They said a successful bid would bring multi-billion-pound investments into Scottish offshore wind projects and supporting infrastructure – including ports, harbours, and shipyards.

BP said it would also use its integrated business model to invest in net-zero industries and that it would make Aberdeen its global offshore ‘wind centre of excellence’.

Also bidding is a partnership involving Scottish renewable energy developer SSE Renewables, Japanese conglomerate Marubeni Corporation, and Danish fund management company Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP).

Perth-headquartered SSE Renewables said it already has Scotland’s largest offshore wind portfolio and claims it is building more offshore wind energy in the world right now than any other company.

Ocean Winds and Aker Offshore Wind have submitted a joint bid to develop floating offshore wind generation in Scotland.

The partnership brings together Ocean Winds’ experience delivering Scotland’s largest offshore windfarm (950MW Moray East) and Aker’s 40+ year history of supply chain and project delivery in the Scottish offshore wind and oil and gas sectors.

A ScottishPower and Shell partnership have submitted a number of proposals for new floating offshore wind farms.

Crown Estate Scotland has said it will confirm the general level of interest later this week.

Image: fokke baarssen/Shutterstock


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