7 August 2023

Multinational consortium to develop Australian offshore wind project

Ireland’s Simply Blue Group, the UK’s Subsea7 and Australia’s Spark Renewables have teamed up to develop a major Australian offshore wind project.

The Sea Fern Floating Offshore Wind project is in a newly declared wind zone in the Pacific Ocean off the Hunter, in New South Wales. The project will be able to generate up to 2 GW.

The Hunter area:

  • covers 1,854 square kilometres between the Central Coast and Port Stephens
  • is 20 km from the coast in the north and over 35 km from the coast in the south
  • has the potential to generate up to 5 GW of renewable wind energy, enough to power an estimated 4.2 million homes.

The project is applying for a feasibility licence. If granted, the project team will start technical, environmental and social impact studies, approvals and consultation.

A group of wind turbines from an offshore wind farm are surrounded by ocean with a cloudy sky and setting sun in the background

A consortium of offshore wind specialists

The project consortium are leaders in the offshore wind sector.

Simply Blue Group has over 10 GW of floating wind projects under development. Subsea7 has more than a decade of offshore wind installation experience and completed over 1,000 projects worldwide. Simply Blue Group and Subsea7 worked on the Salamander Offshore Wind farm, one of Scotland’s most advanced floating offshore wind projects.

Spark Renewables is one of Australia’s premier developers and owners of renewable energy assets. It has onshore planning experience and a track record of delivering electricity to the grid.

Offshore wind powering Australia’s clean energy future

The Australian Government has committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 43% below 2005 levels by 2030 and net zero by 2050. To achieve this, Australia will need to generate 82% of electricity from renewables by 2030.

Offshore wind is expected to play a major role in achieving these targets. According to the Australian Energy Market Operator, as much as 20 GW of wind generation capacity will be added by 2030. In August 2022, the Australian Government announced six proposed regions for offshore renewable energy developments (such as offshore wind) around Australia.

The Hunter area is Australia’s second official offshore wind development zone. Interested developers should visit the Offshore Information Registrar to apply for a feasibility licence. Applications will close on 14 November 2023.

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