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Equinor partners with oil majors Shell, TotalEnergies and ConocoPhillips on floating wind development in Norway

image credit: www.equinor.com
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Equinor has entered into a strategic collaboration with Shell, TotalEnergies, ConocoPhillips and Petoro to develop a floating wind project in the Troll and Oseberg oil and gas fields. The companies are looking into possible options for pursuing a 1 GW development, titled the Trollvind offshore wind farm, which will be located off the coast of Bergen. The partners plan to buy as much energy as the wind farm can produce at a price that can make the project possible. The partners are evaluating commercial offtake agreements to power the Troll and Oseberg installations and the Kollsnes gas processing plant. Trollvind will not require other forms of financial support. Estimates indicate that Trollvind can deliver power for less than NOK 1/kWh. The partners expect to reach an investment decision on the project in 2023, with potential completion of the wind farm scheduled for 2027.

Today’s move marks Equinor’s 4th major offshore wind investment in Norway - the company established its footprint in the space through the 88 MW Hywind Tampen floating wind project, the world’s first floating wind array linked to an offshore oil and gas field. Equinor has also signed today an agreement with technology services company TechnipFMC to jointly develop floating wind steel semi-substructures. The partnership aims to accelerate technology development for floating offshore wind, enable cost reductions and develop local value opportunities. Equinor believes that floating wind projects can be commercialized through technological development with suppliers. Through its early initiatives in the floating wind space, Equinor achieved a 70% cost reduction from existing benchmarks for such projects. With the Hywind Tampen project, the company achieved a further cost reduction of 40%.

The recent moves by Equinor highlight the increasing presence of oil and gas majors in the floating offshore wind space, as these companies can leverage their technological expertise gained from offshore oil and gas installations. Today, Shell has also announced a partnership with German utility EnBW, to participate in France’s AO6 floating offshore wind tender for two projects comprising 250MW off the Mediterranean coast. The development, titled Moulins du Leonis, will leverage Shell’s experience in the area with the Groix Belle Ile pilot project, as well as technological developments deployed in projects in the UK and Scotland.
 

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