The French government announced plans to launch a tender for an offshore wind farm in state waters for up to 1 GW and claimed to have found a suitable location in the Atlantic, west of France. Despite the lack of a clear deadline for the tender, the government revealed that a winner would be chosen in the first half of 2024. It is anticipated that the proposed wind farm will start operating in the early 2030s.
The proposed wind farm will be situated off the coast of France, more than 35 km off the island of Oleron. Following a public discussion that took place between October 2021 and February 2022, the specific site was chosen. The purpose of the project is to use cutting-edge technologies to construct the power plant farther from the coast than is now possible.
The government added that if the project is successful, it will indicate the potential for similar developments and that a second wind farm of the same size may be constructed in the future. The wind park of up to 1 GW could be sited even further offshore and use either floating or fixed-bottom foundations. Preliminary studies are yet to be undertaken on the second scheme. If constructed, the two wind farms would be able to generate enough electricity to power almost 1.6 million homes.
REGlobal’s Views: In early 2022, the French government announced the country’s commitment to build 40 GW of offshore wind by 2050 spread over 50 wind farms. This auction will be an enabling step in that direction.