Floating Wind ‘Needs More Ports’
Few European ports currently have the infrastructure to support floating offshore wind development, according to research by consultancy LOC Renewables.
LOC said it analyzed 96 ports for a Floating Wind Joint Industry report for the Carbon Trust and found only a few in Scotland, Norway and Spain were suitable to develop floating projects.
“Without a plan to develop a network of appropriate ports, the lack of suitable infrastructure for commercial floating offshore wind farms will lead projects to suffer from increased costs and longer operational lead times,” LOC said.
It added that for floating offshore wind a port must have a large onshore area for component set-down and production lines, an area for wet storage of assembled units and be close to other operation-capable ports.
The report also found that new installation vessels will also have to be developed as current ships used for fixed foundation wind farms are “likely to prove insufficient”.
LOC Group joint chief executive RV Ahilan said: “By highlighting the infrastructure challenges facing floating wind we are enabling them to be tackled head-on.
“As the industry develops the necessary technologies to make floating offshore wind commercially viable, there is an urgent need for investment in port infrastructure to avoid delays in the deployment of large-scale floating offshore wind farms.”
LOC Renewables together with WavEC and Cathie Associates examined the logistical challenges relating to floating offshore wind for the report.