Floating Offshore Wind
Scotland is now home to the largest floating wind farms in the world. First we had Equinor's Hywind Scotland project as the largest floating wind farm in the world and now with the completion of Grupo Cobra's Kincardine project it has become the largest floating with farm in the world. , Scotland will become home to the two largest floating offshore wind projects in the world. This pioneering of floating wind is set to continue with the 100MW Pentland project off Dounreay, the 200MW Salamander project off Peterhead and the 300MW Project North Sea wind farm now in the early stages of the planning system in Scotland.
Further floating wind project announcements are expected over the summer months and will culminate in Quarter 1 next year with the announcement of the ScotWind round leasing results. Commercial scale floating wind projects are expected to make up 60-70% (ORE Catapult estimate) of the total ScotWind round capacity and the bulk of the capacity in the new INTOG round (see below).
Operational and Current Pipeline Projects
This table below shows a list of the all the projects in the Scottish offshore wind project pipeline, along with their current status, and the developers involved in delivering these projects. A number of the projects are early stage scoping projects for the INTOG oil and gas electrification leasing round (see below) and these are identified as such.
Besides all of the projects in the table above the map below also shows the 15 sites currently in the adopted Sectoral Marine Plan for Offshore Wind (SMP). Final bids for leases on these sites were due at the application closing date of the 16th of July 2021. Crown Estate Scotland have received 74 bids from various consortia and individual developers reflecting the tremendous interest in the Scottish offshore wind sector.
ScotWind 1 Round History
Crown Estate Scotland started the process for the new ScotWind 1 round on the 10th of June, 2020 for developers to register their interest. This registration window closed on the 5th of August 2020. Next was the applications for Option Agreements on seabed leases for interested developers to bid on by the 16th of July 2021 closing date based on the 15 sites in the final version of the SMP. This will form the basis of the next leasing round in Scotland and successful applicants will be announced in January 2022. More information on the ScotWind 1 leasing round can be found in Crown Estate Scotland's Launch Summary document.
The aim of this leasing round is to deliver another 10GW of offshore wind, should everything be consented, the bulk of which should be delivered by 2027-32. Many of the 15 sites have water depths in excess of 60m and therefore lend themselves to floating offshore wind projects. This first ScotWind round, with more to follow, will therefore lead to the development of some of the first commercial scale floating wind projects in the world.
ScotWind 1 Bidders - Developers and Consortiums
The table below shows a list of the current publicly declared ScotWind 1 bidders. There may be others yet to declare but this list is likely to be close to the final list of the developers and consortiums responsible for up to 74 bids into ScotWind Round 1 with each bidder being able to bid up to 5 separate sites.
Marine Scotland have launched a consultation looking at a some new proposed Areas of Search for an Innovation and Targeted Oil and Gas (INTOG) offshore wind leasing round for innovation projects up to 100MW and oil and gas electrification projects for decarbonisation of these facilities in the Scottish North Sea and West of Shetland. The INTOG round will be limited to 4GW in total as this is the estimate provided by the Oil and Gas Authority as to the scale of the electrification demand from the oil and gas industry. Applications to Crown Estate will start late this year or early next and Option Agreements could be as early as Summer 2023 after the Final Plan is published.
The document for the Sectoral Marine Plan for Offshore Wind for Innovation and Targeted Oil and Gas Decarbonisation (INTOG) link is below.
The consultation web page can be accessed here - https://consult.gov.scot/marine-scotland/smp-innovation-and-targeted-oil-and-gas/ The consultation will close on the 20th of October.
A map showing the INTOG Areas of Search is shown below
This new INTOG round will allow some of the already proposed Energy Transition projects to have leases in place by Summer/Winter 2023 and could add a further 4GW to the Scottish market total which now stands at 24.5GW which is all capable of being delivered by 2033. Further planned ScotWind rounds, starting in 2024 with ScotWind 2, will see this total rise significantly.