The Blauwwind Consortium announced at the end of June that it had reached financial close on the Borssele III/IV wind farms set to be constructed in the Dutch North Sea with a total installed capacity of 731.5 megawatts (MW).
The Consortium announced the news which set in motion construction for the project, which will see a total of 77 of MHI Vestas’ V164 9.5 MW wind turbines installed off the coast of the Norway province of Zeeland. Upon completion, Borssele III and IV will generate approximately 3,000 gigawatt-hours (GWh) per year and provide enough electricity for the equivalent of 825,000 households.
The Blauwwind Consortium is made up of private equity firm Partners Group (on behalf of its clients) (45%), British–Dutch multinational oil and gas company Royal Shell (20%), European clean energy company Diamond Generating Europe (DGE) (15%), Dutch energy group Eneco Group (10%), and Dutch contracting company Van Oord (10%). In addition to their partnership in the Consortium, Shell and Eneco Group have both secured 15-year Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) where they will each buy 50% of the power generated from the Borssele III and IV wind farms. Meanwhile, Van Oord will execute the “Balance of Plant” operations for the project, which consists of engineering, procurement, and construction of the foundations and inter array cables.
The Consortium set a new record low offshore wind price back in December of 2016 (long since surpassed) when it submitted the lowest bid for the development of the projects, with €54.5/MWh, which it will receive through the first 15 years of operation.
Construction is expected to begin in the fourth quarter of 2019 and commercial production will begin in early 2021. MHI Vestas will supply and construct 77 of its V164 9.5 MW wind turbines.
“Borssele III/IV is a landmark project for offshore wind and for MHI Vestas,” said MHI Vestas CEO, Philippe Kavafyan. “Building on our strong track record in the Netherlands, we are delighted to bring the V164-9.5 MW turbine, the world’s most powerful available turbine, to Dutch waters. In doing so, MHI Vestas is proud to help the Netherlands remain at the forefront of competitive offshore wind power generation.”
“The financial close of Borssele III/IV is an extraordinary milestone,” said Kees-Jan Rameau, Chief Strategic Growth Officer at Eneco Group. “It means that even at this record-breaking low subsidy level, our offshore wind project is attractive enough to allow adequate returns for the equity and debt financing. Eneco has contracted 50% of the green electricity output of this windfarm, which contributes significantly to Eneco’s primary goal: to provide even more locally generated green power to our customers.”
“I am proud of the team that executed the tender and development phase of this project both professionally and passionately,” added Erik de Boer, Project Director Blauwwind.
Already under construction are Borssele I and II, being developed by Ørsted with wind turbines supplied by Siemens Gamesa. The two wind farms, upon completion, will yield total capacity of 752 MW.