Offshore appeal in France
Industry calls on government to honour project commitments
An appeal has been launched today at a clean power conference in Cherbourg to support the development of marine renewables and offshore wind energy in France.
At least 60 market players and politicians signed the so-called “Appeal of Cherbourg” published during SER's convention – a half-day event taking place on the sidelines of the ICOE 2018 conference.
The common statement comes as the French government is in talks with developers of six Round 1 and 2 offshore wind farms to reduce the subsidies to the projects.
Current feed-in tariffs, agreed in 2012 and 2014, are between €180 and €230 per megawatt-hour. The first outcome of the negotiations is expected by the end of the month.
The appeal said “considerable human and financial investments have already been made” and the changes to the already agreed subsidies could “put an end to the awarded projects”.
Normandy's vice-president Hubert Dejean de la Batie (pictured left) said he feared France might be missing its destiny.
“We put our trust in the government and went out on a limb and I couldn't understand that the government doesn't follow suit,” he said.
A total of €600m has already been invested over the past few years to gear up French ports for marine renewables and offshore wind energy.
The industry estimates marine renewables and offshore wind could create at least 15,000 direct jobs.
The offshore wind farms impacted are EMF consortium's 480MW Saint-Nazaire project and the 450MW Courseulles and 498MW Fécamp wind farms it is developing in cooperation with WPD, as well the Iberdrola-led Ailes Marines group 496MW Saint-Brieuc scheme. All four projects are scheduled to be up and running in 2023.
The Engie-led LEM consortium is developing the 496MW offshore Noirmoutier and Tréport wind farms, which are planned to come online in 2024.
The three-day ICOE event has more than 200 exhibitors and 200 speakers, with 3500 attendees expected from 25 countries.