Le plus grand parc éolien offshore d’Ecosse commence à produire de l’électricité

La première éolienne du parc éolien offshore baptisé Seagreen a été mise en service en Ecosse.

It is a culmination. Early Tuesday morning, the first wind turbine was commissioned at Scotland’s largest offshore wind farm. Located 27 kilometers from the coast of Angus County, it allows this park, called Seagreen Park, to start producing electricity to eventually supply the equivalent of 1.6 million homes thanks to a total capacity of 1,075 megawatts (MW). This objective will be achieved when the 114 wind turbines are commissioned and, therefore, the park is fully operational; this is expected in the first half of 2023, according to TotalEnergies and SSE Renewables.

When completed, Seagreen will make a significant contribution to Scotland’s and UK’s ambitious renewable energy targets. »said Paul Cooley, director of offshore wind energy at SSE Renewables. To see this turbine spinning in the North Sea and safely starting to generate power is a fantastic achievement for everyone involved with the project. »who has already brought benefits to the local community and the UK supply chain »he added, quoted in the press release.

First offshore wind project in Europe for TotalEnergies

Beyond becoming Scotland’s largest offshore wind farm, the Seagreen project will also be the world’s deepest on a fixed foundation, at 59 meters of water depth, according to the press release from the two partners.

It is also a success for TotalEnergies, which reached an agreement with SSE Renewables in June 2020 to acquire a 51% stake in this project. This is, for the French, the first offshore wind project to start in Europe, the Yulin project in Taiwan being the first in the world to operate. We are pleased to start power generation at the Seagreen site, the first in the UK North Sea. »said Vincent Stoquart, Director of Renewable Energy at TotalEnergies. That is a new step in the development of TotalEnergies offshore wind capacities »which targets 35 gigawatts (GW) of renewable electricity capacity in 2025.

Two tenders won by an Engie joint venture

Another Frenchman to settle in the area: Engie through its joint venture Ocean Winds, with the Portuguese EDPR. The latter won two tenders to build and operate offshore wind farm projects in Scotland out of the three that the Scottish Government had launched to develop its offshore wind farm and bring its electricity production there to 27.8 GW. The total power of the two future offshore wind farms will amount to 2.3 gigawatts (GW), Engie specifies in a press release. Of the three sites, the largest, won in a 50-50 partnership by Ocean Winds and Ireland’s Mainstream Renewable Power, will produce 1.8 GW of electricity. The It is expected to power the equivalent of more than 2 million homes and save 3 million tons of carbon emissions each year. », is also specified in the press release. The second site, won by Ocean Winds alone, will produce 500 MW. In Scotland, Ocean Winds will thus produce 6.1 GW of electricity thanks to its other three offshore wind farms, and sees its international portfolio grow to 14.1 GW. The third call for tenders, won by Ireland’s ESB Asset Development, concerns another 500 MW site.

The bill for the construction of the three projects amounts to 1,200 million pounds (about 1,400 million euros), according to figures provided by the Scottish government. The start-up date of the three future offshore wind farms has not been communicated.

A park on the Bay of Saint-Brieuc

In France, it is in the Bay of Saint-Brieuc, in Brittany, that an offshore wind farm is being prepared, whose works are scheduled to last until the end of 2023. By the end of this project, 62 wind turbines will have been installed. installed on an area of ​​75 square kilometers to produce 1,820 GWh per year, that is, the annual electricity consumption of 835,000 inhabitants (more than the population of the Côtes d’Armor), including heating. The park will be operated by Ailes Marines, a subsidiary of Spain’s Iberdrola.

Wind energy at sea: the first metal foundations of the Saint-Brieuc park installed during the summer

However, it has drawn criticism, in particular from fishermen, who are especially concerned about its impact on the marine environment and on their activity. Last June, Emmanuel Rollin, Vice President of Ailes Marines and Director Offshore France of Iberdrola, was reassuring that the park will not prevent fishermen from fishing there, that the consequences on the environment will be minimal and that the visual impact of future wind turbines will be low.

(with AFP)