Spain’s energy ministry is to develop a roadmap for offshore wind off its coasts and is undertaking a consultation to seek views on its development
In Spain, the water is generally too deep for conventional bottom-fixed foundations, so floating technology is expected to be crucial for unlocking the potential of offshore wind in the country.
Earlier this year, the Spanish Government submitted its 2030 National Energy and Climate Plan (NECP), raising the country’s ambitions on greenhouse gas emission reduction to 23% compared to 1990 levels.
Spain is already a powerhouse for renewable energy deployment with 25.7 GW of installed wind capacity. In 2019 Spain was Europe’s leading market for onshore wind.
As WindEurope noted recently, this position is likely to be strengthened as the NECP anticipates that renewables will account for 42% of the country’s energy mix and generate 74% of its electricity. For wind energy the government in Madrid plans an annual installation of 2.2 GW up to 2030.
Spain is now looking to take advantage of offshore wind, including floating wind in the deep water off its coast.
The consultation said the government in the country, "wants to take advantage of the synergies that exist with onshore wind" when it develops offshore wind and "develop the technology required in a co-ordinated manner."
The aim of the public consultation is to collect the views of stakeholders, administrations and companies potentially involved in offshore wind and develop a roadmap for its potential adoption.
A Wind Industry Sector Agenda, signed in September 2019 by the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, identified offshore wind as "one of the main levers to strengthen the Spanish wind industry."
Leading industry players such as Iberdrola have already expressed an interest in developing offshore wind projects in the country’s waters.
In March 2020, Iberdrola – one of the world’s largest wind power developers – confirmed it would lead a consortium that aims to install a 10-MW plus floating turbine in Norway and develop plans for a demonstration project in Spain.
Details will be finalised and published this year, but the project is expected to see a floating wind structure fabricated in the Basque Country of Spain, with deployment in waters around the Canary Islands or in the Basque Country. Iberdrola has been active in offshore wind for a decade and is now one of the world leaders in the sector.
In February 2020, RWE Renewables and Saitec Offshore Technologies joined forces to test new ways to affordably install and operate offshore windfarms in deepwater, including a pilot project, DemoSATH, off the coast of the Basque region.
Riviera will host a week of free to attend 45-minute webinars focused on offshore wind commencing 8 June. Register your interest now