Offshore Wind Insight

This site provides the latest news and insights within the Norwegian offshore wind development.

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Areas open for offshore wind

The Norwegian Government has currently opened two areas for offshore wind production, namely «Utsira Nord» and «Sørlige Nordsjø II». Click on the information button on the map below to read more about the two.

Utsira Nord

Utsira Nord (UN) is located in the North Sea, west of the Utsira island, close to the cities Haugesund and Stavanger. The area was opened for offshore wind in 2020, and is due to its depths suitable for floating installations. The Government has opened the area for 1500 MW, distributed in three sub-areas of 500 MW each, that will be awarded based on qualitative criteria by the end of 2023.

UN will be connected to the Norwegian onshore grid through a production radial, and the radial shall be constructed, owned and operated by the developers at the developer’s cost.

The Government has stated that the installed capasity may be increased to up to 750 MW each, based on NVEs upcoming report on new areas for offshore wind, and that the option to expand will be concluded before the competition for financial support. After the award of the sub-areas, the projects will compete for support scheme based on a two-sided contract for difference, and the Government has stated that one of the projects will not obtain state funding.

Sørlige Nordsjø II

Sørlige Nordsjø II (SN II) is located in the southern part of the the Norwegian continental shelf in the North Sea. SN II is due to the low ocean depths well suited for bottom-fixed offshore wind installations. This area is opened for up to 3000 MW offshore wind, with the eastern part of the area opened in the first development phase with a maximum installed capacity of 1500 MW, and a minimum capacity of 1400 MW. SN II first phase will be awarded based on an English auction with a prior prequalification of applicants. A minimum of six and a maximum of eight applicants may participate in the auction. Scoring on the prequalification criteria will thus be crucial for the applicants.

The Norwegian Government has opened up for the possibility to combine the development with electrification of the Ekofisk field, and a successful combination will have an impact on the developers scoring in the prequalification phase prior to the auction for the first phase of SN II.

The grid solution for SN II first phase will be a radial with a connection at Kvinesdal as the primary location. The radial shall be constructed, owned and operated by the developer at the developer’s cost.

Opening of new areas

The Norwegian Water and Energy Directorate (NVE) has been tasked by the Government to identify new areas for offshore wind production suitable for up to 30 GW offshore wind, in addition to the two recently opened areas, Sørlige Nordsjø II (bottom fixed installations) and Utsira Nord (floating installations). NVE has in its report published on April 25 2023 identified 20 areas that are suitable for offshore wind, and proposed expansions of Utsira Nord and Sørlige Nordsjø II. NVE proposes that the areas are subject to further examinations in order to find the best suitable areas for offshore wind.

The Government has stated that new areas for offshore wind will be opened by 2025. NVE’s assessments and findings were published on April 25 2023 and can be found on NVE’s website (Norwegian only). NVE has furthermore published a summary of it’s findings regarding the proposed new areas and its proposition for expansion of Utsira Nord and Sørlige Nordsjø II (Norwegian only).

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