Breakthrough for Equinor in Polish offshore wind
Today, Poland’s Energy Regulatory Office (ERO) announced Equinor and Polenergia’s Bałtyk II and Bałtyk III projects were awarded contracts for difference (CfD) under the first phase of Poland’s offshore wind development scheme. The projects, with a combined potential capacity of 1440 MW, are among the first to secure offshore wind awards in Poland.
“The CfD awards to the Bałtyk II and Bałtyk III projects represent a breakthrough for Equinor in Poland and supports the country’s ambitions to transform its energy mix. Full-scale development of the two projects will constitute an offshore wind hub in the Baltic Sea. It will create industrial activity and jobs to support the Polish economy, and supply low-cost renewable electricity to Polish homes and businesses. The CfD award confirms our focused strategy of creating value from early access at scale in attractive markets,” says Pål Eitrheim, Equinor’s executive vice president for New Energy Solutions.
The award from ERO is an important milestone towards the realization of Bałtyk II and Bałtyk III. It confirms the projects’ inclusion in the first phase of Poland’s ambitious offshore wind development plan, contributing significantly to Poland’s energy transition and the development of the local offshore wind supply chain.
The CfDs are awarded at PLN 319.60 (*) per MWh for up to 25 years, subject to some adjustments and final approval from Polish authorities and the European Commission.
Poland has the ambition to develop 5.9 GW of offshore wind by 2030 and up to 11 GW by 2040. With a combined capacity of 1440 MW, Bałtyk II and Bałtyk III could generate enough renewable offshore wind energy to power two million Polish homes. They are among the largest offshore wind projects currently under development in Poland.
Pending all necessary agreements and permits, and subject to the final investment decision from Equinor and Polenergia, construction work could commence as early as 2024.
“The award of CfDs to the Bałtyk II and III projects is an important milestone towards Equinor’s ambitions in Poland and the Baltic region. Alongside our partner Polenergia, we look forward to further developing these projects to create value, also in the local community. The Baltic Sea will be a significant resource for offshore wind energy, and we are only in the early stages of realizing its full potential,” says Ingunn Svegården, Equinor’s vice president for Emerging Regions in New Energy Solutions.
Equinor was among the first international developers to enter the Polish offshore wind market in 2018 through the acquisition of a 50 percent interest in the Bałtyk II and Bałtyk III projects from Polenergia. Equinor subsequently acquired from Polenergia a 50 percent interest in the early-phase Bałtyk I offshore wind project.
Equinor will operate the projects through the development, construction, and operations phases.
(* PLN 319.60 per MWh equals approximately 70 Euro per MWh at current exchange rate)
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About the projects
- MFW Bałtyk II and MFW Bałtyk III will be located in the southwestern part of the Baltic Sea, within Poland’s exclusive economic zone.
- The projects cover a combined area of approximately 240 square kilometers located between 22 km and 37 km from the Polish coast. The water depths range from around 25 to 40 meters.
- Equinor is jointly developing the Bałtyk I, Bałtyk II and Bałtyk III projects with Polenergia.
- MFW Bałtyk I area has the potential to generate up to 1560 MW and is following a different timeline and is being matured accordingly.
Equinor’s ambition is to be a leading company in the energy transition, building a material position in renewable energy. Equinor powers more than one million homes in Europe with renewable electricity from offshore wind farms in the UK and Germany. The company is building material offshore wind clusters in the North Sea, the US east coast and the Baltic Sea. In Poland, Equinor is involved in three offshore wind projects: MFW Bałtyk I, MFW Bałtyk II and MFW Bałtyk III. Equinor and Polenergia each hold a 50% interest in the three projects.