Ocean Winds, an international offshore wind energy company created by EDP Renewables (EDPR) and ENGIE (50:50), has been awarded the rights to develop new offshore wind generation capacity in the outer Moray Firth in Scotland, as part of the ScotWind process run by Crown Estate Scotland.
Bids to develop the 440 km2 site – designated as NE4 by Marine Scotland in 2020 – were invited by the Scottish Government in summer last year (2021), as part of a competitive process to make new seabed areas available for electricity generation. It was the first time in a decade that new sites in Scottish waters have been made available for offshore wind.
NE4 has been named “Caledonia Offshore Wind Farm” by Ocean Winds. The site lies in the outer Moray Firth, to the East of Scotland’s largest windfarm, the Moray East Offshore Wind farm, which Ocean Winds began developing in 2010 and whose commercial operational date is expected beginning of 2022.
Water depths are in the order of 50 m, and the site is expected to be developed using proven fixed-bottom foundations. The area holds a capacity of around 1 GW. Its output is expected to meet the needs of over 1 million average UK households, and consideration is being given to using part of the output for green hydrogen production.
Development will commence with the publication of an Environmental Impact Scoping Report early next year and it is anticipated that the delivery will be in this decade.
Commenting, Bautista Rodríguez, CEO of Ocean Winds said:
“Ocean Winds considers it very important to have won the trust of the Scottish Government to continue development of offshore wind in the Moray Firth with our new Scottish site, the Caledonia Offshore Wind Farm.
Scotland and the UK is one of the key strategic markets for Ocean Winds and today’s success in the ScotWind process strengthens our position as a leading player in offshore wind worldwide.”
Commenting, Dan Finch, Managing Director of Ocean Winds UK said:
“Our 950 MW Moray East project led the way, not just in Scotland, but in the world in terms of cutting the cost of low carbon electricity. Moray East is now generating enough power to meet the needs of up to 40% of Scottish households. Its sister project, Moray West, is shovel-ready for construction pending the next CfD auction. The Caledonia Offshore Wind Farm builds on this success and today’s announcement provides vital security to the supply chain and makes the Moray Firth the home of Scottish offshore wind generation.”