Enova, owned by Norway Ministry of Climate and Environment, has made a financing commitment to support the Hywind Tampen floating offshore windfarm with Equinor.
The $255m (Nkr2.3bn) funding will be offered under the programme for full-scale innovative energy and climate measures of Enova.
Hywind Tampen will be developed to supply power to offshore oil and gas platforms in the Norwegian sector of the North Sea.
Equinor New Energy Solutions executive vice-president Pål Eitrheim said: “The support that the licences have received for the Hywind Tampen project demonstrates the will of Norwegian authorities to invest in and develop floating offshore windfarms and renewable energy supplies.
“With this support, we have taken an important step forward in realising the project. Now it is up to the licences to further mature the project towards a final investment decision this autumn.”
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Upon completion of the floating offshore wind farm, Equinor and its partners plan to use the renewable power generated by the windfarm to power the Gullfaks and Snorre fields.
The offshore windfarm will feature 11 wind turbines that will have the capacity to generate 88MW of electricity. This will be sufficient to meet 35% of the annual power demand of five platforms according to Equinor.
Hywind Tampen is expected to offset more than 200,000t of carbon emissions annually.
Hywind Tampen project director Olav-Bernt Haga said: “The Hywind Tampen project will contribute to further developing floating offshore wind technology and reducing the costs of future floating offshore windfarms, offering new industrial opportunities for Norway, the licences and Norwegian supplier industry in a growing global offshore wind market.”
The project will also receive Nkr566m ($62.9m) as investment grant from the Business Sector’s NOx Fund.
The Gullfaks partners are Equinor Energy, Petoro and OMV (Norge), and Snorre partners are Equinor Energy, Petoro, ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Norway, Idemitsu Petroleum Norge, DEA Norge and Vår Energi.
Equinor has previous experience in exploring opportunities for floating offshore windfarms. In February 2019 it signed a memorandum of understanding with the Korea National Oil Corporation to develop commercial floating offshore windpower.