Oil giants to build world’s largest floating wind farm in Norway

A consortium of oil giants headed by Equinor and including TotalEnergies, Petoro, Shell and ConocoPhillips are set to commence a feasibility study into what could be the world’s largest floating offshore wind farm, 65km off the coast of Bergen, Norway.

The Trollvind farm could produce as much as 4.3TWh, with an installed capacity of 1GW, and could supply much of the power needed to run the Troll and Oseberg offshore fields, which it forms a part of, through an onshore connection.

The Bergen area already provides for several of Equinor and its partners’ wind farms, but it requires more power on its energy grid, which is the reason for this new study.

The current plan is that the partners will buy as much energy for the site as it can produce at a cheap price to make the project possible, in the hopes that, once set up, the project can aid in the rapid electrification of oil and gas – hoping to lower the sector’s emissions while energy firms look for alternate forms of generation.

Equinor CEO Anders Opedal hopes that by ensuring oil and gas operates at lower emissions it can help Norway’s energy sector remain competitive as the world looks to shift away from fossil fuels.

He also belies it could make generation more consistent as electrification adds many optimisations.

“Trollvind is a concept where renewable energy works to facilitate several objectives; helping cut emissions through electrification, delivering power to an area where shortages have already created challenges for new industrial development, and Norway maintains its position as a leader in the industrialisation of floating offshore wind”, he said.

“A full-scale floating offshore wind farm like Trollvind could boost momentum towards realising the Norwegian authorities’ ambition to position Norway as an offshore wind nation, building on expertise from the oil and gas industry”.

The Norwegian government is hoping to slash carbon emissions from Norway’s energy sector, in particular across the continental shelf which hosts much of its energy fields, dozens of kilometres from the coast, in the North Sea.

(Source: Industry Europe, June 20-2022)

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