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TotalEnergies, BW Ideol and Qair eye 2024 start for floating offshore wind pilot in French Mediterranean

TotalEnergies, BW Ideol and Qair make final investment decision on 30MW French floating offshore wind pilot

BW Ideol also provided the floating platform for France's first floating offshore wind turbine
BW Ideol also provided the floating platform for France's first floating offshore wind turbine

Project partners including TotalEnergies are eyeing a 2024 start-up for one of the Mediterranean’s first floating offshore wind farms after completing financing.

French renewables firm Qair, energy giant TotalEnergies and floating specialist BW Ideol have made a final investment decision for the 30MW 30MW EolMed (Le Gruissan) EolMed (Le Gruissan) (30MW) Offshoreoff Gruissan, Languedoc-Roussillon, France, Europe Click to see full details floating offshore wind farm off the south of France. They have not confirmed how much the pilot project will cost.

The project is due to consist of three of Vestas’s V164-10.0MW turbines mounted on BW Ideol’s ‘damping pool’ floating platform, which is designed to encircle water inside a ring to limit dynamic movements around the platform.

It is due to be located 18km off the coast of the coastal town of Gruissan. The partners aim to commission the project in mid-2024.

EolMed was successful in a French floating offshore wind tender in 2016, alongside a project backed by Eolfi and China General Nuclear Power Group.

Paul Dupin de la Guérivière, CEO of BW Ideol noted that the EolMed project was never challenged in the courts – in stark contrast to earlier French offshore wind projects.

The European Investment Bank helped EolMed’s developers to negotiate and structure non-recourse debt provided by lenders Banque Postale, BPCE Energeco and BPI France. Natixis and Banque Postale acted as hedging banks.

EolMed is due to be one of the first floating offshore wind projects in the Mediterranean Sea. A 30MW project that is close to full commissioning in Italian waters uses fixed-bottom foundations.

France has just one operational offshore wind turbine to date – a 2MW Vestas turbine installed on BW Ideol’s floating platform off the coast of western France in the Atlantic Ocean. It is due to announce the winner of an auction to build a 250MW project in the Atlantic later this year.

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