Karlsruhe/Hamburg/London. Karlsruhe-based EnBW and bp plan to jointly develop offshore wind farms off the coasts of Great Britain in a 50:50 partnership. An important first milestone has now been reached: In the auction for the award of seabed rights by The Crown Estate in the UK, the two partners secured two large areas in the Irish Sea that are estimated to be the highest-value areas in the first auction of offshore wind rights in England and Wales for ten years. EnBW and bp plan to build two offshore wind farms there with a combined capacity of three gigawatts, that is enough to power the equivalent of 3.4 million households.
“We are delighted with this auction win in a tough international bidder field. The award confirms that bp and EnBW are the right partners with the right strategy and the right capabilities. EnBW is among today’s leaders in advanced offshore wind technology. In partnership with bp, a major player with international experience in the offshore business, we will once again contribute significantly to a climate-friendly energy future in the UK, which is currently the world’s largest market for offshore wind power”, said EnBW CEO Frank Mastiaux.
“Our bids prevailed for the most attractive areas in the auction that stand out for above average wind conditions and favourable prospects in terms of approval,” added Dirk Güsewell, head of renewable energy portfolio development at EnBW. “We have already been able to put in an advance grid connection application. The combination of the two areas right next to each other also means wide-ranging synergies in planning, construction and operation going forward. All of these factors have a positive impact on the asset value of the planned wind farms.”
Dev Sanyal, bp’s executive vice president for gas and low carbon energy, said: “bp is building a focused low carbon energy portfolio, delivering clean, reliable and affordable energy, consistent with our disciplined approach to investment. Returns from offshore wind are attractive and will be enduring for decades to come. bp was a pioneer in the UK’s offshore industry, and we will bring more than 50 years of UK experience together with EnBW’s offshore wind expertise. By forging strong partnerships like this, we are developing and will deliver a world-class wind energy portfolio.”