DONG, E.ON, Strabag Form Offshore Wind Joint Venture
Three large offshore wind players, DONG Energy, E.ON and Strabag have established a joint venture company to perform an environmental study in waters off Borkum in the German North Sea.
The joint venture aims at not only reducing the project costs of offshore wind farms, but also at mitigating their environmental impact. The investigation will run for seven years in an area to the north of the East Frisian islands.
All three companies are building or planning offshore wind farms in the North Sea and are, therefore, obliged to examine possible adverse effects on the environment. The newly formed company, named Umweltuntersuchung Nördlich Borkum GmbH (UMBO), will create a database of the assessment, which will be available to German Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency and other companies planning wind farms in the investigated area covering a total of 4300km2.
“This joint venture will bring us closer towards our goal of constantly reducing the construction and operating costs of offshore wind installations, because the joint approach will reduce the corresponding costs for environmental investigations by up to 50% per project,” said Trine Borum Bojsen, Managing Director of DONG Energy, who is responsible for the German offshore wind business. “Our cooperation can serve as a model for further joint initiatives in the offshore wind industry.”
Sven Utermöhlen, Director of the offshore business of E.ON, said: “The initiative facilitates the overall expansion of the offshore technology. In this way we contribute towards ensuring that offshore wind energy can become a reliable and economical source of energy in an increasingly uncertain energy system.”
“This approach of several project developers initiating one bundled, large-scale investigation for numerous projects represents a new step in preliminary and accompanying research for offshore wind farm planning. For the first time, we are able to meet a request of the licensing authorities for so-called ‘cluster investigations’,” said Alexander Dierkes, Technical Director of STRABAG OW EVS GmbH, the company that is developing the participating “OWP West” project on behalf of the owner of the rights, Northern Energy OWP West GmbH.
Offshore WIND Staff, April 17, 2014; Image: DONG Energy