4C Offshore Empowering Intelligence

Victorian government announces offshore wind implementation statement

4C Offshore | Kaitlin Walsh
By: Kaitlin Walsh 16/03/2023 Victoria State Government

The Victorian Government has announced its next steps towards creating Australia's first offshore wind sector with the release of the Victorian Offshore Wind Energy Implementation Statement 2.

The Victorian Offshore Wind Energy Implementation Statement 2 sets out to provide certainty and assist in ongoing collaborations with local governments, communities, unions and investors regarding the state's future within the offshore wind industry.

The statement notes that the Victorian government is taking an industry-led approach to delivering the first division of offshore wind power. The government is aiming to develop an optimal procurement and support package for the first tranche of offshore wind by 2025, which could include a contract for difference and complementary contributions for capital and financing. This competitive process can give Victorians the best value for money and enable the government to meet ambitious timelines. This also means the community can benefit through local business development, training and jobs.

Furthermore, the statement confirms that the Victorian Renewable Energy Terminal will be established at the Port of Hastings, which has been chosen as Australia's first assembly port to support offshore wind. This will be subject to planning and environmental approvals and an extensive consultation process is underway. This will enable traditional owners, the community and stakeholders to express their opinions.

The Victorian Renewable Energy Terminal port infrastructure is expected to support offshore wind delivery of up to 1 GW per year and also handle turbines up to 18 MW with fixed foundations. Lily D'Ambrosio MP, Minister for Climate Action; Energy and Resources; and the State Electricity Commission, said this decision "will place Victoria at the centre of Australia's offshore wind construction and deployment".

Additionally, VicGrid will be leading transmission works and are expected to start community consultation in the first quarter of 2023. This will be supported by the release of an "Offshore Wind Transmission Development and Engagement Roadmap". VicGrid will also provide a coordinated connection point near the Gippsland Coast and Portland. This will enable up to 2.5 GW of capacity in both areas.

Offshore Wind Energy Victoria will assess the opportunities to develop a Victorian Renewable Energy Supply Chain Hub located near offshore wind development areas to prompt the establishment of renewable energy supply chains in Victoria. This will maximise local capacity, support the emergence of new renewable energy industries and provide quality job opportunities for workers in Victoria's regions.

D'Ambrosia continues: "We are designing a fit-for-purpose legislative and regulatory framework for offshore wind that will balance support for the industry, environmental considerations, community and stakeholder expectations, and recognition of the legal rights of Traditional Owners. By the end of this year, we will introduce legislation to give offshore wind proponents the certainty they need to proceed with their investments."

The Victorian government has committed to releasing a series of Offshore Wind Energy Implementation Statements that are designed to support and guide industry and the Victorian community on the development of the offshore wind sector. The third statement is expected to be released in late 2023.

For more information on offshore wind farms worldwide, click here.


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