Cerulean Winds has presented an ambitious idea to expedite the decarbonization of oil and gas assets with an integrated 200-turbine floating wind and hydrogen construction that would twist the dial on emissions objectives while creating considerable jobs.
The projected £10 billion green infrastructure strategy would be capable of reducing 20 million tonnes of CO2 emissions through simultaneous North Sea projects west of Shetland and in the Central North Sea.
The initiative is now urging the UK and Scottish governments to make a “exceptional” argument for achieving “extraordinary” results for the economy and the environment. Marine Scotland has received a formal request for seabed leases.
“The UK is progressing the energy transition, but a sense of urgency and joined-up approach is required to enable rapid decarbonization of oil and gas assets or there is a risk of earlier decommissioning and significant job losses. Emissions are quite rightly no longer acceptable, but with emissions penalties and taxes coming, the UK oil and gas industry’s role in homegrown energy security during the transition could be threatened unless current decarbonization efforts can be greatly speeded up. The consequences of not moving quickly enough will be catastrophic for the economy and the environment.”Dan Jackson, founding director of Cerulean Winds.
The Cerulean leadership has Tier 1 contractors in place to deliver the UKCS backbone development and has engaged the financial markets for a fully funded infrastructure construct.
The proposed development involves:
- Over 200 of the largest floating turbines at sites West of Shetland and in the Central North Sea with 3GW per hour of capacity, feeding power to the offshore facilities and excess 1.5 GW per hour power to onshore green hydrogen plants.
- Ability to electrify the majority of current UKCS assets as well as future production potential from 2024 to reduce emissions well ahead of abatement targets.
- 100% availability of green power to offshore platforms at a price below current gas turbine generation through a self-sustained scheme with no upfront cost to operators.
- The development of green hydrogen at scale and £1 billion hydrogen export potential.
- No subsidies or CFD requirements and hundreds of millions of pounds to government revenue via leases and taxation through to 2030.
Cerulean has completed the necessary infrastructure planning for the scheme to achieve the needed degree of project readiness, with a financial close scheduled for Q1 2022. Construction would begin shortly after, with energization beginning in 2024. The Infrastructure Project Finance model, which is typically utilized for large capital projects, is being used. Cerulean forecasts that the current 160,000 oil and gas jobs can be preserved, and that 200,000 new jobs will be created in the floating wind and hydrogen sectors over the next five years.