A photo of the Kincardine floating wind farm in Scotland

Offshore wind firms take aim at decarbonising Scottish oil and gas

Vårgrønn and Flotation Energy have formed an offshore wind partnership aimed at decarbonising the oil and gas industry in Scotland.

For illustrative purpose only; Kincardine floating wind farm; Photo source: Principle Power

Vårgrønn, a Norwegian full cycle offshore wind company owned by Plenitude (Eni) and HitecVision, and Flotation Energy, an Edinburgh-based floating wind specialist, plan to generate renewable energy from offshore wind farms to enable the electrification and decarbonisation of offshore oil and gas installations in the North Sea.

Any excess power will be made available to benefit UK consumers, the companies said.

The partners will apply for leases in Crown Estate Scotland’s Innovation and Targeted Oil and Gas (INTOG) round.

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The INTOG leasing round is expected to make a significant contribution to Scotland’s net-zero target, and The North Sea Transition Deal goal to reduce offshore emissions by a minimum of 50 per cent by 2030.

The partners said they will leverage the oil and gas expertise of Vårgrønn’s shareholders to deliver innovative solutions and promote supply chain development in Scotland.

”Flotation Energy and Vårgrønn combine their unique experience from offshore wind development,” Olav Hetland, CEO of Vårgrønn, said.

”Vårgrønn provides Norwegian offshore competence, offshore wind experience, financial expertise and strength to the consortium, also leveraging on our shareholders Eni and HitecVision. Flotation Energy has an established local position in Scotland, entrepreneurial drive and experience from developing Kincardine the largest operational floating windfarm in the world. We look forward to a very successful partnership for this nationally important project.”

Launched back in August, the INTOG leasing round allows developers to apply for the rights to build small-scale innovative offshore wind projects of less than 100 MW, as well as larger projects which will provide green electricity to oil and gas infrastructure to reduce their carbon emissions.  

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Awards will be determined on a mixture of price bid and quality and will be split into two pots – one for smaller-scale innovation projects, and one for projects linked to oil and gas infrastructure.  

Depending on the volume and quality of submissions, it is envisaged that applicants will be notified of the leasing results by the end of March 2023. Exclusivity agreements will then be finalised.

”Decarbonising UK Oil and Gas platforms is an urgent priority,” Lord Nicol Stephen, CEO & Co-founder of Flotation Energy, said.

”Flotation Energy initiated early development work in 2020. We are determined to push forward so that our floating wind projects are delivering renewable energy to the oil and gas sector by the mid-2020’s.
As well as tackling climate change, these projects will lead to billions of pounds of investment and thousands of skilled jobs – securing Scotland’s leadership in floating offshore wind. We are excited to team up with Vårgrønn in establishing a strong offshore wind bid for the INTOG round.”