A joint 2 GW floating wind farm project in Ireland was launched by a local fisheries association and a company involved in the deployment of green energy technology. It is the first cooperation in the world between the two opposing sectors.
Swedish Hexicon, which develops floating offshore wind projects, has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Killybegs Fishermen’s Organization and Sinbad Marine Services.
The document concerns the design of a floating wind farm located 50 km offshore Donegal, with a capacity of up to 2 GW.
The innovative partnership is based on a new approach, where local fishermen are engaged and influence the development process from the very beginning, Hexion announced.
It is the first time that actors from the two opposing sectors have a common goal in an offshore wind farm project
The global expansion of offshore wind farms often raises concerns for fishing communities and is a cause of conflict between the two industries. Now, actors from the aforementioned opposing sectors have gathered for the first time to cooperate on a project with a common goal in the sector, according to the Swedish company.
The aim of the memorandum is for all parties involved to cooperate and agree on solutions that are mutually beneficial for the development of the wind farm, and do not negatively affect the fishing industry or the marine environment, while at the same time contributing to the transformation of local and global energy supply chains, the partners said.
Companies and fishermen intend to use some of the energy from the floating wind farm to produce green fuels such as hydrogen and ammonia. Green fuels could be used to power the fishing fleet while contributing to the energy security of the port and the local community, Hexion said.
The entire wind farm development project is an idea and initiative of the Killybegs Fishermen’s Organization and Sinbad Marine Services, which runs maritime operations in the area.
Floating wind parks are experiencing exponential growth globally. Irish waters are suitable for the new technology, which is likely to become competitive with or even overtake bottom-fixed offshore turbines.
The Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) declared Ireland one of the top five developing markets for offshore wind farms.