Even for an offshore wind industry that is accustomed to all things being supersized, last week was a big week. On Wednesday the U.K. released its 10-point plan to achieve its target of net-zero carbon by 2050. At the top of the list was the already announced 40-gigawatt offshore wind target. It was joined by a 5 GW clean hydrogen goal, a doubling of support for carbon-capture projects and a 10-year advance on the ban of new fossil-fueled cars, the date for which is now 2030. All in all, the U.K. is officially headed on a path of deep electrification, with a hydrogen economy in development to mop up those hard-to-reach emissions beyond 2030. In both cases, the long-term anchor source of energy will be offshore wind power. On Tuesday this week, the government in London confirmed a doubling of the capacity available in the next contracts-for-difference auction, from just under 6 GW back in 2019 to as much as 12 GW. Offshore wind will compete in its own carve-out of the auction to ensure some diversity in the winning technologies. One day after the U.K.’s 10-point plan was launched, the European Commission, the EU’s executive branch, presented its offshore wind strategy. The plan includes greater cooperation on planning and cross-border project development, but the headline figures were the targets — 60 GW by 2030 (up from 12 GW today) and 300 GW (not a typo) by 2050.
GTM 30th Nov 2020 read more »