Offshore wind power: EU goals are achievable until 2050
The offshore wind power is on the right track to achieve the goals set by the European Union until 2050. Despite the overall positive attitude of the offshore wind industry, there are still some challenges that it needs to overcome.
In the last week of November, all eyes were set on the WindEurope Offshore 2019, in which Endiprev exhibited. The decarbonization goals that Europe is aiming for are doable and achievable. But if provided the right development of new and more advanced turbines and innovative solutions, alongside Governments and political enforcements.
The right political conjuncture for the growth of offshore wind power
Offshore is going to be a key piece for Europe to meet the decarbonization goals until 2050. That was quite clear throughout WindEurope Offshore 2019. However, this is doable if Europe follows good examples, such as Denmark. The country will continue to invest in renewable energies and reduce the CO2 emissions by 70% until 2030, and 100% by 2050, as the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Denmark pointed out in the opening session.
In fact, the 10 North Seas Energy Cooperation countries are already putting words into action. In their 2020 Work Program, they are making commitments to work together on maritime spatial planning and electricity grids. They will also develop hybrid and joint offshore wind farms.
The run for the most innovative solutions
A few days after one of the best inventions of 2019 went to GE Haliade-X 12 MW, and Siemens Gamesa launched the 10 MW wind turbine, the SGRE announced the ability of its most recent wind turbine to be digitally upgraded to 11 MW. This new turbine will be in a 1.5 GW zero-subsidy project, in the Netherlands. This alone is another breakthrough for offshore wind power, which will result in the reduction of the installation, operations, and maintenance costs.
Alongside the new offshore wind machines, we are witnessing a quick development of floating wind technology in Europe. At this point, this technology is led by the UK, France, Portugal, and Norway. MHI Vestas was the chosen supplier to equip a key pilot project off France with its 10 MW wind turbine. It is also going to be commissioning three 8.3 MW wind turbines at the WindFloat Atlantic project off Portugal. There is no doubt that this is going to be the next big thing in the offshore wind sector. By 2030, the industry is expecting an increase from 6 GW to 19 GW of floating capacity, in Europe.
Is hydrogen in the future of offshore wind power?
During WindEurope Offshore 2019, hydrogen was many times pointed out as a way to increase the efficiency of offshore wind farms, mostly when they are overproducing energy or when energy is cheaper. With this being possible, it will revolutionize the offshore wind market, once this hydrogen can be used in many different ways to later produce energy as hydrogens cells, turbines, generators, and it can also be used as a natural fuel.
The demand for high levels of safety on the offshore wind sector
For being a young industry, the offshore sector still has something to learn from mature industries. Safety was one of the hot topics during WindEurope Offshore 2019. Last year, the offshore industry registered 4,55 accidents per 1M hour worked. It was clear that the whole industry needs to tackle this and improve these numbers, aiming to reach and exceed better thresholds, as the offshore oil & gas industry, for example.
After speaking with our stand visitors and listening to industry-leading figures, we are confident that Endiprev’s teams are prepared to address the future needs of the European offshore wind power. We have the privilege to cooperate with important companies, such as GE Renewable Energies, Siemens Gamesa, and MHI Vestas, helping them accomplish their ambitious goals.
The WindEurope Offshore 2019 showed that companies have three main concerns to reach the 2050 goals, innovation, training, and safety. When choosing our teams, these are a priority for Endiprev, and in which we invest every year. The professionalism of our technicians and engineers is a key factor that allows us to give our customers stability in the operations, and a high level of commitment, efficiency, and safety.