Norway has started the construction of the world’s largest offshore floating wind farm off its western coast to power production from nearby oil and gas fields, Electrek reported.
Offshore floating wind energy plants can prove to be beneficial in the North Sea where wind speeds are massively high. Last year, it was reported how Scotland’s offshore floating 50 MW wind farm could power 55,000 households and was being readied for operation. Now, another wind farm off the coast of Yorkshire in the U.K. with a capacity to generate 1.3 GW of energy also went live.
Norway’s windfarm is called the Hywind Tampen. It has a planned capacity of 88 MW and comprises 11 wind turbines constructed on a floating concrete structure anchored using a shared system, a project press release states.
The project is located 87 miles (140 km) off Norway’s coast and the turbines will remain afloat at a water depth of 853 – 984 feet (260-300 m). So far, four of the 11 wind turbines have already been installed which were upgraded from their planned 8 MW capacity to 8.6 MW capacity. Production of power will begin from the third quarter of 2022 and the entire facility will be used to partially meet the energy demands of the Snorre and Gullfaks offshore oil and gas fields.
Equinor, a Norwegian power company and one of the partners in the project claims that the floating wind farm will meet almost 35 percent of the annual energy demand of the fossil fuel platforms while offsetting 200,000 tons of CO2 emissions and 1,000 tons of NOx emissions every year.
The press release also states that the project will also aid in industrializing solutions and cutting down costs for future offshore wind power projects.
While Norway leads the world in the adoption of electric cars, it is also the fifth largest exporter of oil and third-largest exporter of natural gas, the Nordic Energy Research website states. Petroleum products account for 60 percent of Norway’s exports and it is unlikely that the country will switch this to meet the EU’s climate goals.
Norway aims to continue its oil exploration for much longer and with added capacity in the future, the country could even claim that its production process is 100 percent green.