Ørsted and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP) have entered into a partnership to develop approx. 5.2 gigawatts of offshore wind in Denmark across four projects. The partnership can accelerate the green transformation greatly, create value in the offshore wind industry, strengthen value- and job creation, and create a Danish business and export stronghold within Power-to-X.
Ørsted and CIP have decided to join forces in a new 50/50 partnership to develop a number of offshore wind projects under the open-door scheme in Denmark. The projects are Vikinge Banke (1.1 GW) and Jyske Banke Nord (1.1 GW) in the North Sea, and Bornholm Bassin Syd (1.5 GW) and Bornholm Basin Øst (1.5 GW) in the Baltic Sea. Together, the projects correspond to more than double Denmark’s current installed offshore wind capacity, and they represent a key contribution to the green transformation of Denmark and Europe. The offshore wind farms will be established without support from Danish taxpayers, and they will contribute significantly to growth and job creation in Denmark.
The partnership between Ørsted and CIP encompasses the development, construction, and operation of the offshore wind farms as well as the related transmission assets. The partnership envisages that the open-door projects can create a Danish Power-to-X stronghold by delivering large-scale renewable electricity as soon as possible and with a target of 2027/2028 if feasible.
Rasmus Errboe, Head of Region Continental Europe at Ørsted says, “Denmark has been a pioneer in offshore wind and is a front-runner in the green transformation. The four major open-door projects can help consolidate Denmark’s continued leadership position and create the foundation to kick-start the next phase of a Danish business adventure around the production of renewable hydrogen and green fuels. I’m very excited about the partnership with CIP where we combine our unique skills and knowledge to develop a substantial part of Denmark’s offshore wind resources.”
Torsten Lodberg Smed, Senior Partner at Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners, says, “It’s an obvious and good idea for the most experienced Danish offshore wind developers to join forces to ensure that Denmark’s largest build-out of offshore wind takes place as efficiently as possible and with due respect for the environment and biodiversity in Danish waters. We’re proud to present our proposal together with Ørsted for how we can ensure the green energy for Denmark, which has never been more necessary, than during these times. If we succeed in completing the projects, we’ll also ensure the renewable electricity needed to give the Danish Power-to-X industry a much-needed boost, and we’re pleased with the support from the Danish pension funds and their members, who prioritise and invest in the green transition.”
Globally, more renewable energy is urgently needed to ensure regional energy independence and fight the climate crisis. Denmark has some of the world’s best offshore wind resources and is consequently able to supply large volumes of renewable electricity for the continued decarbonisation of Denmark and Europe. Ambitious political plans have already been made to harvest Denmark’s offshore wind resources, which Ørsted and CIP fully support. Ørsted and CIP also believe that the partnership’s large-scale offshore wind projects can, in parallel with the government tenders, contribute to further pace, value creation and innovation of Denmark’s green transition in several areas, with some key dimensions being:
- Power-to-X: Heavy industry and heavy transport need new solutions to reduce their carbon emissions, and Power-to-X will be central. The European Commission estimates that by 2030, a large double-digit billion amount of euros will be invested in Power-to-X technology, and Denmark, with its strong value chain and large offshore wind resources, is well positioned to become a centre for this industry. The partnership believes there is a large potential to use the power directly for Power-to-X, thereby potentially enabling regional centres for large-scale production of renewable hydrogen or green fuels. This renewable hydrogen can then be fed into the international hydrogen infrastructure that is on the drawing board in Northern Europe, turning the Danish North Sea and Baltic Sea regions into international growth centres for renewable energy production.
- More green energy for a challenging time: Both in terms of the climate and the geopolitical situation, green energy is the answer to many of the major challenges facing the world. The government tenders for offshore wind enables Denmark to realise its 70 % carbon emission reduction target for 2030, but the large open-door projects can ensure that industries currently dependent on international gas and oil import can use Power-to-X as a green alternative much earlier than otherwise. This will lead to increased energy independence and to greater carbon reductions by 2030.
- Sustainable build-out: Ørsted and CIP both work with sustainability requirements and biodiversity as key elements in the build-out of green energy. The partnership believes that the open-door projects should meet the same high demands as future government tenders and thus sees opportunities for the open-door projects to help set the direction for a build-out of offshore wind that takes into account nature, the climate, and local communities, while also contributing to the national economy.
- Increased visibility and volume for the industry: Each of the large open-door projects are approximately twice the size of Denmark’s largest operating offshore wind farm. Ørsted and CIP hope that the projects can be built prior to and in parallel with the projects in the government tenders, so that the offshore wind industry can have visibility over new projects and a stable pipeline, which will create sustainable growth in the supply chain, a large part of which is headquartered or has production facilities in Denmark.
The partnership is subject to merger clearance, which is expected before the end of 2022.