STAVANGER, Norway – Equinor and Vårgrønn have agreed to jointly apply for offshore wind acreage in Norway for the Utsira Nord area of the Norwegian North Sea.
Vårgrønn is a Norwegian renewable energy company established by HitecVision and Eni.
The partnership will prepare and submit an application to the Norwegian authorities to develop floating offshore wind at Utsira Nord west off Utsira and Haugalandet in the North Sea.
Norway’s Ministry of Petroleum and Energy has opened two areas for offshore renewable energy developments, Utsira Nord and Sørlige Nordsjø II, and the authorities are working on the licensing process for Norwegian offshore wind power projects.
Pål Eitrheim, Equinor’s executive vice president for New energy solutions, said: “A floating offshore wind farm at Utsira Nord could be the next project at scale to drive industrialization of floating offshore wind and create new opportunities for Norwegian industry…
“As the leading floating offshore wind developer Equinor has the experience and capabilities necessary to develop the next full-scale floating offshore wind farm in Norway after Hywind Tampen.
Equinor and Eni are partners in the Dogger Bank offshore wind farm development in the UK North Sea, while Eni subsidiary Vår Energi is a partner in the Hywind Tampen project, designed to part-power the Snorre and Gullfaks field platforms.
Between the Hywind demo in 2009 and Hywind Scotland in 2017, Equinor managed to reduce capex per megawatt for floating offshore wind by 70%, the company claimed.
Next year, when Hywind Tampen is due to start operation, it aims to cut the costs by a further 40%.