ENERGY

Offshore wind farm bill coming

Offshore wind farm bill coming

Greece’s declared national target for the installation of offshore wind farms adding up to 2 gigawatts by 2030 has mobilized the interest of international investors as well as some of the country’s biggest energy groups that are patiently waiting for the regulatory framework to open the way for their business plans.

The bill to that effect has been delayed for at least a year, since the original announcements by the Energy Ministry, and it has been six months since the its main elements were presented to the cabinet last November.

In the last couple of months, under pressure from the Finance Ministry too (given that its introduction is among the prior actions required for the disbursement of the second tranche by the Recovery and Resilience Facility), the competent authorities of the Energy Ministry are now scrambling to make the deadlines for the bill to clear Parliament by June.

Kathimerini understands the bill will provide for a mixed model for the development of offshore wind farms, with the state selecting the broader zones for installation and proceeding up to a certain level with the licensing process. Parts of those blocks will then be conceded to interested investors through tenders.

The projects will be selected based on the financial bids regarding their revenues for the energy produced, as is also the case with onshore wind farms and photovoltaics.

According to an Energy Ministry study, the Aegean Sea could host fixed wind farms of some 10 GW, and another 30-40 GW of floating facilities. The ideal areas for the floating farms are considered to be the Cyclades, the northern Aegean (between Limnos and Agios Efstratios), the Dodecanses (between Ikaria, Patmos and Leros), and between Crete and Karpathos.

International market leaders which have partnered with Greek energy groups discern opportunities for their expansion to Greece’s seas. Norway’s Equinor, the world’s biggest offshore wind park developer, was among the first to express an interest in Greece. Terna Energy has reached a deal with Ocean Winds (a venture of EDP Renewables with ENGIE), as has Mytilineos with Copenhagen Offshore Partners.