Portugal’s Offshore Wind Potential Attracting Investment from Top International Firms

(OE) Renewable energy developer and fund manager Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP) intends to invest 8 billion euros ($8.6 billion) in a large offshore wind power park in Portugal that is preparing its first auction of such concessions. 

CIP said on Thursday in a statement it aimed to create an installed capacity of 2 gigawatts in a project called Nortada off central Portugal’s Atlantic coast, which would amount to 20% of the country’s 2030 target for offshore wind power.

 “We intend to place Portugal at the forefront of the energy transition worldwide… Offshore wind energy has enormous potential for growth and evolution,” it said, citing “ambitions revealed by the Portuguese government” and preliminary results of discussions on the matter, as the drivers of its interest. 

Last week, Economy Minister Antonio Costa e Silva said Portugal’s powerful and durable offshore wind potential was attracting investment intentions from a range of large international companies. 

The government two weeks ago launched a public hearing regarding proposals for the delimitation of areas off the country’s Atlantic coast where wind farms can be built, targeting 10 gigawatts (GW) of installed wind capacity by 2030. CIP said it has more than 50 GW of offshore wind projects in its portfolio, in Europe and the United States. 

European nations are betting on renewable energies, after gas prices hit record highs in 2022 following the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, which was Europe’s top gas supplier. Wind turbines in the open sea have higher full-load hours than land-based ones, and should help Portugal hit its decarbonization targets. 

Portugal aims to generate 80% of its annual electricity usage from renewable sources by 2026, up from around 60% in 2022, which was already one of the highest ratios in Europe. 

($1 = 0.9298 euro) 

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