Following rapid price falls, offshore wind companies must tackle growing merchant risks to ensure future projects remain competitive and supply facilities remain profitable, leading industry executives said.
DONG Energy’s massive Hornsea Project One farm will set a long-standing capacity record due to state and private financing challenges and the benefits of clustering and standardization should be felt across industry, experts said.
Statoil’s projections of 70% CAPEX cuts on the world's first floating turbine windfarm far outstrip industry-wide forecasts and supply chain and installation savings will see project costs approach fixed foundation plants over the next decade.
Ireland's offshore wind development has been boosted by the European Commission's decision to prioritize an Ireland-UK interconnector program and national regulatory issues must now be resolved to ensure construction, industry experts said.
Offshore project developers face a limited supply of vessels capable of installing new higher capacity turbines in deeper waters until the arrival from around 2018 of a new generation of purpose-built installation vessels, according to Wind Energy Update’s Offshore Foundations and Supporting Structures Report 2015.
The UK's removal of Climate Change Levy (CCL) exemptions for renewable energy projects puts further pressure on developers to improve on the latest record-low offtake prices of GBP114-119/MWh through large scale deployment of the most advanced turbine and grid technology.
New detailed evidence of increasing load factors for UK offshore windfarms is great news for the future of the industry, Ian Pritchard, Energy Asset Portfolio Manager at the UK Crown Estate told Wind Energy Update.
Manufacturing costs for Mono Bucket foundations are around 10-15% below the costs for monopile systems and installation costs around 30-50% lower, Lorry Wagner, President of Lake Erie Energy Development Corporation (LEEDCo), told Wind Energy Update.
Energy storage solutions such as pumped hydro provide wind farm developers with the means to cut output wastage during off-peak periods, Dave Holmes, Managing Director of UK’s Quarry Battery Company, said.
The growing size of offshore wind farms provides greater scope for data optimisation during Operations and Maintenance, while software solutions can also help mitigate risk during the development phase, Marcus Ihle, Senior Consultant at Outsmart, said.