Wind Energy – Australia
Equinor has partnered with Australian renewable energy company OceanEx to develop offshore wind projects in NSW.
Offshore wind projects have been identified by federal Energy Minister Chris Bowen as central to Labor’s ambition to rapidly grow renewable energy generation. International companies have moved to develop offshore wind in Victoria, which will be the site of Australia’s first offshore projects.
Moving to position themselves as the first mover in NSW, Equinor has partnered with OceanEx. OceanEx was established by two of the founders of Star of the South, which is on course to be Australia’s first commissioned offshore wind farm as Victoria aims for 20 per cent of the state’s energy needs from the zero emission source by the end of the decade.
While other renewable energy developers see Victoria as the most attractive offshore wind location, Thomas Hansen, business development director at Equinor, said NSW had several advantages over Gippsland.
“We see energy demand, we see a highly skilled workforce, infrastructure, ports and then of course, the water depths and the (network) layout in Australia/ NSW means that floating technology where we have a solid track record is very well suited,” Hansen told The Australian Financial Review.
Equinor and OceanEx will begin work on three offshore wind projects in NSW, each with a proposed generation capacity of 2 gigawatts. The duo hope to work on the projects simultaneously but this will depend on the regulatory developments.