Chile a 'world-class destination' for renewables

IEA said recent policy initiatives have encouraged investment, along with the recent upgrade connecting the nation’s two main grid systems.

Being 4,300km long and, on average, 177km wide, Chile provides “unique challenges” for energy infrastructure.

However, with the Atacama Desert, and the Andes running parallel with the coastline, it has a “high potential” for wind and solar resources.

IEA congratulated the government on developing a long-term energy policy to 2050, on which the public was consulted, according to the agency.

It backed the technology-neutral auctions and also noted the government’s increased involvement by the Chilean state in energy policy “which has helped to inject a new dynamism in the development of energy projects”.

Still, IEA projects energy demand in Chile to at least double by 2050, requiring further grid and generation investment.

Currently, renewables generates 40% of Chile’s demands, with targets to increase this to 60% by 2035 and 70% by 2050.

“To attain a 60% share of renewable power by 2035 at the least cost, the share of solar photovoltaics (PV) and wind power must increase considerably,” IEA said in the report.

“This is possible, because the costs of these technologies have decreased substantially and will decline further, while the potential is very high for solar and high for wind power.

“However, to integrate a large share of variable renewable energy, the flexibility of the power sector must be increased.

“More transmission infrastructure, storage and demand-side response needs to be developed. Natural gas could be used more as a backup fuel for solar and wind power and for that purpose a liquid wholesale market for gas would be benefitial,” the report added.

The nation shows no signs of slowing its appetite for low-carbon energy.

Following the election of conservative businessman Sebastián Piñera as president in December, Chile’s renewable energy association (Acera) backed calls for sourcing 100% of electricity from renewables by 2040.

According to Acera, the country’s installed renewable capacity has grown from 952MW in 2012 to 4.9GW by the end of 2017 — with a further 1GW of mainly wind and solar power to be expected in 2018.

Data from Windpower Intelligence, the research and data arm of Windpower Monthly, shows Chile added around 272MW of wind in 2017, with total capacity now standing at around 1.7GW.

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Source: Test from Wind Power Monthly

Heli Service Flies High with Global Tech I Contract

Global Tech I Offshore Wind GmbH has awarded Heli Service International with a contract to carry out helicopter services at the 400MW Global Tech I offshore wind farm in the German North Sea.

Heli Service International will be in charge of the transport of passengers, luggage, and cargo from the logistic hub in Emden to the offshore wind farm and back.

The wind farm’s offshore substation has a helicopter landing deck to which the company’s helicopters will be flying.

According to Global Tech I, the helicopter services could also be delivered to neighboring offshore wind farms.

The contract, which is a result of a tender issued in September, will be effective starting 1 May.

The Global Tech I offshore wind farm went into operation in 2015. It is located 140km from Emden in the German Exclusive Economic Zone and comprises 80 AREVA M5000-116 wind turbines, each with a capacity of 5MW.

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Source: Test from Offshore Wind News

BWS Opens New Multiterminal at Port of Esbjerg

Blue Water Shipping (BWS) has put into operation a new 116,000m² multiterminal in the East Port area of the Port of Esbjerg in Denmark, boosting its capabilities to accommodate RoRo vessel traffic, which has increased at the port with the wind turbine industry’s use of RoRo vessels and more operations by the existing RoRo customers.

Image source: Port of Esbjerg

At the end of 2017, two new RoRo ramps were completed in the East Port area, which will also be used by Blue Water Shipping’s new terminal.

According to Port Director Ole Ingrisch, improved conditions for RoRo traffic have been one of the major focus areas in the establishment of the East Port. “RoRo traffic has always been one of the core business areas for the Port of Esbjerg. The new terminal is ideally located in relation to the two new RoRo ramps, which we completed in the autumn, and traffic will have direct access to the E20 motorway from the terminal area,” explains Ole Ingrisch, who also highlights that the new terminal is very much needed.”

When the terminal is fully completed in the spring, it will comprise four fully automatic gates and 1,600 m2 of workshops, washing facilities and offices.

The new terminal has been put into operation earlier than planned because DFDS, Northern Europe’s largest shipping and logistics company, recently announced that it would be giving up its current areas at the port to use the new terminal instead for its Immingham-Esbjerg route. Blue Water Shipping has therefore chosen to open the terminal now so that DFDS ships can use the facilities.

In October 2017, Port of Esbjerg took over a new harbour area at the East Port, which saw an expansion by further 250,000m², including three new RoRo ramps and a 400m quay side. The Port of Esbjerg invested EUR 27 million into this project, after it witnessed a high level of activity within the wind industry, RoRo traffic and car imports in 2016.

Source: Test from Offshore Wind News

ABPmer to Back Scottish Deep Water Renewables Plan

Illustration; Image: US Department of Energy

Marine Scotland has awarded a contract to ABPmer to prepare the necessary scoping documents to support the development of floating wind and/ or other possible deep water technologies in Scottish waters. 

To assist in meeting its renewable energy targets, the Scottish Government is developing Sectoral Marine Plans for Offshore Renewable Energy. The government released draft plans for consultation in 2013, which were not finalised due to market uncertainty created by a change in the UK subsidy regime, as well as wave and tidal technology taking longer to mature to the level of commercial readiness.

However, with the development of the world’s first floating wind farm array off the coast of Peterhead and the recent cost reduction for the offshore wind sector demonstrated in the most recent UK Contract for Difference round, Scottish Ministers now wish to review the Draft Sectoral Marine Plan for Offshore Wind Energy and undertake a strategic marine planning process to ensure an enabling spatial strategy is in place for the successful development of this sector to include deep water technologies.

Elena San Martin, a senior environmental consultant at ABPmer explained: “The sectoral marine planning process is driven by Sustainability Appraisal which details the requirements for Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA), Social & Economic Impact Assessment (SEIA), Strategic Habitats Regulations Appraisal (HRA) and Public Participation.

“As well as helping to identify the potential opportunities for floating wind and other possible future deep water wind developments in Scottish waters, our scoping process will also set out the approach to undertaking a strategic SEIA and a plan-level HRA in accordance with relevant Scottish and UK legislation. These outputs will be used to inform the strategic assessments needed for a new Offshore Wind Plan for Scottish Waters.”

The project is expected to be completed by the end of March and will be published on the Scottish Government’s website in due course. Risk and Policy Analysts Ltd will provide input to the SEIA scoping process.

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Source: Test from Offshore Wind News

Innovation Loads First Hornsea One Monopiles

Image source: DEME Group

GeoSea’s jack-up Innovation has loaded the first set of monopile foundations in Vlissingen (Flushing), the Netherlands, and is now en route to install them on Ørsted’s 1.2GW Hornsea Project One wind farm off the UK, DEME said.

In total, the Innovation will install 174 monopile foundations, produced by EEW SPC, at the site located some 120 kilometres off the coast of Yorkshire, according to DEME.

EEW OSB will manufacture 86, Bladt Industries 68, and Steelwind Nordenham with the Teesside-based Wilton Engineering 20 transition pieces for the project.

The Hornsea Project One wind farm will comprise 174 Siemens 7MW wind turbines, three offshore substations and a reactive compensation substation (RCS). Once fully operational in 2020, it will be the largest offshore wind farm in the world.

Ørsted is the sole owner of Hornsea One. The company also has the project rights to the Hornsea Project Two and Three, which have the potential of further 3GW offshore wind power capacity in total.

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Source: Test from Offshore Wind News

HSM Offshore Putting Together Borkum Riffgrund 2 OSS Topside

HSM Offshore, the EPC contractor for the Borkum Riffgrund 2 offshore substation, installed the two transformers that make the topside structure on 13 January. The topside left the construction hall for the installation of the transformers and was brought back into the covered construction area after the lifting operation was completed. 

Image source: HSM Offshore

The substation’s jacket foundation was installed at the offshore wind farm site in July 2017, while the topside is scheduled to be delivered in May 2018.

After winning the EPC contract, HSM Offshore appointed Iv-Oil & Gas for the engineering and procurement of the substation. Iv-Oil & Gas is handling the detailed engineering and procurement of the utility systems for the topside, and Iv-Consult has produced the shop drawings for both jacket and topside.

The 2,500-tonne topside will be installed on top of its 1,700-tonne jacket foundation in the south-eastern part of the North Sea, approximately 38 kilometres off the German island of Borkum.

The offshore substation, as well as the Borkum Riffgrund 2 offshore wind farm, is expected to be fully commissioned in 2019.

The 450MW Borkum Riffgrund 2, developed by Ørsted, will consist of 56 MHI Vestas 8MW turbines and is expected to be fully commissioned in 2019.

The project is owned by Ørsted and Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP).

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Source: Test from Offshore Wind News

Policy blocking companies from buying renewables

Rapidly falling costs of wind and solar power mean RE100 companies are increasingly citing the economic benefits of renewables when choosing to seek out PPAs, the group said in its annual report.

The proportion of renewable electricity being sourced via PPAs grew fourfold in 2016, RE100 stated in its study.

Meanwhile, purchases from installations on a buyer’s site by owned by a supplier increased 15-fold, while 56 companies generated their own electricity on-site in 2016 — a nine-fold increase on the previous year.

But in some regions — Europe, for example — the PPA market remains “largely untapped”, RE100 stated, with underdeveloped market-based systems, heavily regulated markets, and uncertain policy frameworks, being the most cited barriers to renewable electricity sourcing.

Business case

The business case for transitioning to renewables is “becoming increasingly clear”, RE stated.

Despite price reductions, the number of members reporting cost savings after transitioning to renewable energy still represented only a minority of respondents (40.5%) in RE100’s survey.

But respondents argued that long-term agreements provided financial certainty, especially when tied to technology with lower-operating costs in the long-run.

Last year, Microsoft signed an agreement with Vattenfall to power a Dutch data centre with all of the energy produced from the Swedish utility’s 300MW Wieringermeer site under a ten-year agreement.

Brad Smith, Microsoft’s president and chief legal officer, told RE100: “As we expand our global cloud infrastructure, we will increasingly turn to renewable energy because it is a clean power source and gives us better financial predictability.”

Similarly, Google — which last year signed PPAs for 536MW from wind farms in the US — was impressed by expected financial savings and financial predictability.

Urs Hölze, senior vice president of the company’s technical infrastructure division, said: “Renewables are increasingly becoming the lowest cost option.

“Electricity costs are one of the largest components of our operating expenses at our data centres, and having a long-term stable cost of renewable power provides protection against price swings in energy,” Hölze said.

Accordingly, financial barriers remained a “significant challenge” to increasing the uptake of renewable PPAs, RE100 found, however, “these were cited by significantly fewer members than policy barriers”.


RE100 members also identified technical hurdles, including the difficulty of learning and managing renewable acquisition strategies across multiple locations — each with different market regimes, processes, advisors and nuances — to reach their global targets.

Lack of data and traceability issues regarding their own consumption also presented challenges, the group stated.

“The campaign will continue to work with partners across the world to help members and the wider business community to overcome or remove those barriers through education, peer-to-peer knowledge sharing, political advocacy and market development,” RE100 added.


Difficulties in accessing certification for renewable energy sources in underdeveloped market-based systems, heavily regulated markets, challenging and uncertain policy frameworks were all policy barriers cited by RE100 members.

In Europe, industry association WindEurope has argued that in some countries it is unclear whether PPAs are legal, for example.

Meanwhile, in Japan — where RE100 gained its first three members this year — there is currently no mechanism for companies to source renewable energy through PPAs and China limits PPAs to on-site, behind-the-meter installations.

Arvind Bodhankar, chief strategy officer of Tata Motors in India, argued that “open access regulations need to be consistent across states” in the company’s native India.

UK mobile phone network EE, part of the BT Group, signed a five-year PPA for 680MW of wind-and solar-generated electricity with Innogy subsidiary Npower in October.

But Robert Williams, general manager of procurement in BT’s utilities, power and cooling division, argued PPAs needed to be better incentivised: “We have got to keep working to encourage the government to create more stable frameworks for renewable policy and certification.

“We must continue to apply pressure on policymakers to create clearer incentives for companies to purchase renewable energy and stimulate demand.”

RE100, a coalition of 122 businesses committed to 100% renewable electricity, grew in number last year and members now collectively have more than $2.75 trillion in revenue and represent more than 159TWh of demand for renewables.

Source: Test from Wind Power Monthly

Hibiki Wind Energy, Kitakyushu City Ink Hibikinada Agreement

Hibiki Wind Energy signed an agreement with Kitakyushu city on 10 January, laying out the basic matters regarding the project to set up and operate the 229MW Hibikinada offshore wind farm in the Kitakyushu Port area. 

Image source: Hibiki Wind Energy

The agreement covers the provision of the port facilities to the project company and specifies on the roles and responsibilities each of the two parties carry. It also lays out the basis for benefits to be brought to the local community and responsibilities towards the community with regard to the project, such as keeping the stakeholders – including the local residents – updated on the works on the project.

In February 2017, the government of Kitakyushu City selected the consortium comprising Kyuden Mirai Energy, Kyuden Corporation (Kyushu Electric Power), Hokutaku Renewable Energy Service, J-Power, and Seibugas to build the offshore wind farm off the Port of Hibikinada. Shotly after that, the consortium established the special purpose company Hibiki Wind Energy to lead the development and operation of the 44-turbine wind farm.

The Hibikinada offshore wind farm is being set up to support the Green Energy Port Hibiki in Kitakyushu City, accelerate the development of marine renewable energy, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and contribute to energy security, according to the consortium behind the project.

Offshore WIND Staff

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Source: Test from Offshore Wind News

Wind wins bulk of corporate renewable PPAs in 2017

Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) found that 43 corporations in ten different countries signed power purchase agreements (PPAs) for 5.4GW of clean energy.

This was up from 4.3GW in 2016 and a previous record of 4.4GW in 2015, analysts noted in BNEF’s inaugural Corporate Energy Market Outlook.

Wind accounted for most of power bought through PPAs last year, representing 2,821MW (86.9%) of energy bought by the world’s top ten corporate off-takers.

Corporate PPAs are becoming increasingly popular, BNEF analysis suggested, with 76% of the 19GW of clean power bought since 2008 purchased in the last three years.

The analysts noted PPAs were increasingly being signed despite a persisting “tumultuous political climate and cheap wholesale power” in the US, and despite uncertainty about whether such power deals are legal in some European countries.

BNEF also expected ‘regulatory barriers’ to corporate PPAs in Japan and China to be removed.

“The growth in corporate procurement, despite political and economic barriers, demonstrates the importance of environmental, social and governance issues for companies,” said Kyle Harrison, a corporate energy strategy analyst for BNEF.

“Sustainability and acting sustainably in many instances are even more important, for the largest corporate clean energy buyers around the world, than any savings made on the cost of electricity.”


Corporate PPA volumes in the US reached 2.8GW in 2017, with 39 corporations signing their first offsite power deal.

However, the new tax bill enacted by Congress and signed by President Trump is expected to “slightly inhibit tax equity investment” as it creates uncertainty for equity investors as to their ability to use the full extent of clean energy credits, BNEF noted.

Nevertheless, US corporations signed big deals for wind power last year.

In December, technology giant Google announced it had signed PPAs for 536MW from wind farms in Iowa, South Dakota and Oklahoma owned by EDF Renewable Energy, Iberdrola subsidiary Avangrid Renewables and from the Grand River Dam Authority, while, a 253MW wind farm providing Amazon with its largest PPA to date was commissioned in October.

General Motors bought 200MW of output from two wind projects to power manufacturing facilities in Ohio and Indiana, while Kimberly Clark — the corporation behind Andrex, Huggies and Kleenex — signed virtual PPAs worth 245MW with Invenergy and EDF Renewable Energy.

Drinks conglomerate Anheuser-Busch bought 51% of the power generated from Italian utility Enel’s 298MW Thunder Ranch project in Oklahoma.

Latin America is a historically sluggish corporate procurement market, BNEF stated, but is expected to attract major activity in 2018 and the coming years.

In Mexico, private companies can now sign bilateral PPAs with developers, and major power buyers will also be expected to comply with clean energy mandates, once a new certificate market kicks off this year.

Meanwhile, large consumers in Argentina can now purchase clean energy directly from developers, rather than just the national utility.

Elsewhere, in Chile, where much of the country’s power consumption comes from the industrial sector, and where cheap renewable energy prices have been yielded in the last two years, “mining companies have increased their interest in clean energy to lower electricity costs”, according to BNEF.

Europe, Middle East Africa

Corporations bought 1.1GW of clean energy in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) last year — slightly down on 2016.

The region is “largely driven by one-off contracts”, BNEF stated, including aluminium producer Norsk Hydro agreeing to buy 1.65TWh a year for 19 years from the 650MW Markbygden ETT site.

Many US companies that have met renewable energy targets domestically are now turning their attention to Europe, BNEF noted.

In the Netherlands, for example, Microsoft signed an agreement with Vattenfall to power a Dutch data centre with all of the energy produced from the Swedish utility’s 300MW Wieringermeer site under a ten-year agreement.

However, the European Union’s Winter Package threatens to “weaken demand” by making it so “developers that receive renewable energy subsidies will no longer be eligible to receive certificates, and instead will have to acquire them through a mandatory auction”, BNEF warned.


Most of the 3.2GW renewable PPAs signed in Asia since 2008 took place in India, BNEF research found.

Cheap renewable energy as a result of competitive auctions and an unreliable grid made such power deals attractive.

In Australia, expensive wholesale power and the availability of renewable energy certificates incentivised companies locking into relatively cheap renewable prices on a long-term basis.

Power deals for more than 430MW were signed last year. The country’s first ‘collective PPA’ — an off-take deal selling power from the 80MW Crowlands project to universities, city councils and companies around Melbourne — is nearing completion.

Japan currently has no mechanism for consumers to sign direct PPAs with power generation companies, while China currently limits corporate procurement to onsite projects, specifically behind-the-meter solar projects installed at industrial parks.

But analysts expect this to change as both countries are “undergoing power market reforms”.

Source: Test from Wind Power Monthly