Norwegian oil, gas, and wind company Equinor announced this week that it will partner with two Korean entities to develop Donghae 1, a 200 megawatt (MW) floating offshore wind project in South Korea.
The newly-formed consortium, consisting of Equinor, Korea National Oil Corporation (KNOC) and the Korean power company Korea East-West Power (EWP), announced this week the launch of development of the 200 MW Donghae 1 floating offshore wind project. Set to be built close to the KNOC-operated Donghae natural gas field off the coast of Ulsan, in the country’s southeast, the Donghae 1 project could begin construction in 2022 and could possibly reach completion by 2024.
Equinor, formerly Statoil, is the company behind the world’s only currently operational floating offshore wind farm, the 30 megawatt (MW) Hywind Scotland floating offshore wind farm, built off the coast of Peterhead in Aberdeenshire, Scotland. That farm began generating electricity in October of 2017 and was the site of the installation of the world’s first battery for an offshore wind farm in early 2018.
There are a number of other floating offshore wind farms in various stages of development — including nine in Europe, three in Asia, and one in the United States. On its own, floating wind in the United Kingdom could reach an installed base of 10 gigawatts (GW) by 2050, according to figures published in late-2018. These Projects may support up to 17,000 jobs by 2050 and generate gross value added of £33.6 billion.
Before construction, the consortium will carry out a feasibility study for the wind farm which will include investigating the use of the Donghae 1 platform as a substation for a possible wind farm.
“We are very pleased to be member of the partnership involved in realising the first floating offshore wind farm in Asia,” said Stephen Bull, senior vice president for the wind and low carbon cluster of New Energy Solutions in Equinor. “If we succeed in realising the project, the Donghae floating offshore wind project will be the world’s biggest floating wind farm, more than twice the size of Hywind Tampen on the Norwegian continental shelf. A floating offshore wind farm of this size will help further increase the competitiveness of floating offshore wind power in the future.”