Renewable Energy M&A: RWE joins other offshore wind heavyweights in establishing a footprint in the Celtic Sea, offshore Ireland
- Dec 6, 2022 9:50 am GMT
The company has acquired 100% of Irish company Western Power Offshore Developments, which is in the early stages of developing the 900 MW East Celtic Wind Farm. The project is located off the Wexford/Waterford coast between 9-36 km from shore and has applied for a Foreshore Licence from the government which, if granted, will allow for numerous surveys to be undertaken within the site area. Final decisions with regard to the overall size of the wind farm, turbine locations, and cable routes are yet to be made. RWE plans to launch the public consultation process for the proposed development in 2023, with commercial operations expected by 2030.
The acquisition effectively doubles RWE’s existing offshore wind pipeline in the region, building upon its proposed 600-900 MW Dublin Array project partnership with Saorgus Energy. The project, which is also expected to be operationalized in 2030, will require an investment of ~€1bn. Both developments will contribute to the Irish Government’s targets of reaching an 80% share of renewables in the domestic power mix by 2030, supported by installing 7 GW of offshore wind capacity.
The Celtic Sea is one of only two UK locations where floating offshore wind turbines will be deployed at scale, the other being Scotland. Interestingly, the UK government recently awarded its first Contract for Difference (CfD) for a floating wind farm to developer Hexicon, for its 32 MW TwinHub project offshore Cornwall. The contract was awarded through a special pot in the UK Round 4 auction, at a price of £87.3/MWh. The CfD price achieved by Hexicon is “an initial line in the sand that other developers will be looking very closely at,” according to energy services provider Kent. The price of future floating wind projects could be higher due to less favorable site conditions, the firm added.
The above analysis is proprietary to Enerdatics’ energy analytics team, based on the current understanding of the available data. The information is subject to change and should not be taken to constitute professional advice or a recommendation.
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