Petrobras, the Brazilian state-owned energy company, has set its sights on harnessing the potential of offshore wind to produce green hydrogen and facilitate Power to X (PtX) conversion.
This ambitious endeavor, which spans the extreme south, southeast, and northeast regions of the country, aims to tap into both domestic and global markets. Daniel Pedroso, Petrobras’ Renewable Energy manager, highlighted this innovative strategy during the Transition Dialogues series on offshore wind farms, organized by the specialized agency epbr.
Pedroso emphasized the prospect of integrating offshore wind with the green hydrogen and PtX value chain, creating an avenue for renewable generation to enter global product networks. The envisioned strategy aligns with Brazil’s aspirations of leveraging its natural assets and industrial capabilities to generate domestic wealth while accessing international markets, similar to its approach in the pre-salt oil sector.
The success of offshore wind initiatives in Brazil, involving substantial investments, hinges on cost-effective energy production, efficient logistics chains, and a transparent regulatory framework. A crucial factor is the clarity of the granting process for installation areas and their connection to the energy market.
Pedroso outlined a two-phase approach: the first, involving the National Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas, and Biofuels (ANP), focuses on area allocation, while the second, centered around contracting energy, is to be coordinated by the National Electric Energy Agency (Aneel). Transparency and technical-financial qualification are pivotal elements of the proposed approach, ensuring that awarded companies have a clear vision of their investment commitments.
Elbia Gannoum, President of the Brazilian Association of Wind Energy (Abeeólica), provided insight into the regulatory trajectory. She expressed her commitment to achieving regulatory approval for offshore wind farms between September and October.
Bill 576/2021, initiated by Senator Jean Paul Prates (PT-RN) and Petrobras’ current president, has garnered significant attention. Gannoum shared that Arthur Lira, President of the Chamber of Deputies, is actively pushing for the bill’s approval. The aim is to create a robust framework to catalyze the offshore wind industry’s growth.
Unlocking the potential of offshore wind in Brazil necessitates a phased approach. Reserve auctions are envisioned as the first step, providing a platform for learning and paving the way for government-backed energy purchase commitments. The prompt approval of the regulatory bill is crucial for initiating this transformative journey into Brazil’s renewable future.