Growing wholesale market exposure and rising flexibility requirements have led some wind operators to develop profit-sharing operations and maintenance (O&M) arrangements which maximize market revenues.
Wind turbine suppliers are leveraging global operations data from hot and sandy sites to drive down costs in growing Middle East and North Africa markets, leading firms said at the MENAWind 2016 conference on May 25.
Switching to self-performance of wind farm operations and maintenance (O&M) at end of warranty can cut costs by between 25% and 35% and allow operators to make more design improvements to increase unit reliability, Jeff Wehner, VP Renewable Operations, Duke Energy, said.
Deepwater’s new capacity market agreement for the Block Island wind farm highlights the range of offtake options available to offshore projects but long-term power purchase contracts will prove crucial until the technology can compete in the wholesale markets.
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.
South Africa's new budget plans failed to calm the volatility in currency trading which has increased the challenges for foreign renewable investors. A deep pool of domestic lenders should support wind capacity expansion while the government steers the country towards faster growth.
Portugal’s Iberwind has increased the availability of its wind farms by around 4% since 2007 and expects further performance improvements following trailblazing tests on yaw alignment and blade aerodynamics, Rui Maia, Iberwind’s Operation and Maintenance Manager, said.
The emergence of a blade manufacturing base in South Africa's expanding wind power industry could see local content levels far exceed 50% in upcoming project bids, Johan van den Berg, CEO of the South African Wind Energy Association, said.