Equinor and partners unveil 1 GW floating wind plans for Norway

4C Offshore | Tom Russell
By: 17/06/2022 Equinor

Equinor, Petoro, TotalEnergies, Shell and ConocoPhillips in the Troll and Oseberg fields, have initiated a study and are looking into possible options for building a floating offshore wind farm in the Troll area some 65 kilometres west of Bergen, Norway.

With an installed capacity of ~1 GW and an annual production of ~4.3 TWh, with a startup in 2027, Trollvind could provide much of the electricity needed to run the offshore fields Troll and Oseberg through an onshore connection point. The Bergen area already serves several of these installations with power – and needs more input to its electricity grid. The plan is that the partnership will buy as much energy as the wind farm can produce at a price that can make the project possible.

Transferring offshore wind power to shore may enable the possibility of building a larger wind farm than one directly connected to oil and gas installations offshore. According to the project partners, increasing the size of wind farms is a key factor in industrialising floating offshore wind and reducing costs. Furthermore, they outlined that bringing the power to shore promotes more efficient power utilisation through better interaction with regulated hydropower and onshore industry.

The partners are evaluating commercial arrangements where the Trollvind development are selling power to the Troll and Oseberg installations and the Kollsnes plant. Trollvind will not require other forms of financial support. Estimates indicate that Trollvind can deliver power for less than NOK 1/kWh.

“By producing oil and gas with low greenhouse gas emissions, we reinforce the competitiveness of the Norwegian shelf, maintain activity in the industry and safeguard future value creation. Trollvind is a concept where renewable energy works to facilitate several objectives; helping cut emissions through electrification, delivering power to an area where shortages have already created challenges for new industrial development, and Norway maintains its position as a leader in the industrialisation of floating offshore wind. A full-scale floating offshore wind farm like Trollvind could boost momentum towards realising the Norwegian authorities’ ambition to position Norway as an offshore wind nation, building on expertise from the oil and gas industry,”
said Equinor’s chief executive, Anders Opedal.
“This initiative provides the supplier industry with predictability and an offshore wind portfolio to work with in the years ahead.”

“This can be a fantastic opportunity for Norway and for the industry,”
said Shell’s global EVP, Renewable Generation, Thomas Brostrøm. “Using our integrated capabilities to decarbonise existing operations and accelerate offshore wind development is exactly the kind of action our companies need to be taking to further society’s progress towards net zero by 2050”.

“We are excited about the possibilities to supply our energy production offshore with new renewable power. This project confirms Norway’s leadership in green energy production and our experience that working together is a value enabler,”
said Phil Cunningham, TotalEnergies Managing Director and Country Chair.

"In this study, we build on our Norwegian competitive edge and strengths: Technology development and collaboration. The cooperation between all parties is crucial to realize the transformation of the industry to a low-carbon future. This is important for Norway as a mature oil and gas region and will ensure a competitive Norwegian shelf also in the future,"
said Kristin F. Kragseth, Petoro's CEO.