A new terminal dedicated to serving the offshore wind sector is the centrepiece of Bremerhaven's strategy to remain Germany's leading offshore wind port. A decision about which consortium will build and operate the new terminal should be announced next summer.
The most significant challenge facing the terminal project is the need to secure financing, explained Stefan Färber, Bremenports' port development manager, speaking with Windpower Offshore. It has been assumed that the terminal will be built using private sector investment only, however, it is not yet clear whether the project will attract sufficient private funds.
Bremenports is a management company owned by the City of Bremen. Its plan for a more accessible, dedicated offshore terminal is based around a 24ha site, which will feature a 500m quay wall and a water depth of 14.1m.
The success of Bremerhaven as Germany's leading port for the offshore wind market has relied to a significant extent, thus far, on the use of a quay that is only accessible via a sea lock with a 35m width. Bremerhaven's container port and automotive industry port are also used by some offshore wind suppliers.
Four companies have built manufacturing facilities around Bremerhaven's exisitng offshore wind quay: Areva, WeserWind, Power Blades and REpower. The plan for the new terminal includes construction of a heavyweight cargo road connecting the offshore terminal with the existing quay. Part of this road will be built by 'recycling' a redundant aircraft runway, as the route goes through the site of a now-defunct regional airport.
Other challenges that must be resolved prior to the terminal's construction include completion of an environmental impact assessment (EIA) and agreement on necessary environmental compensation measures, explains Färber. A nautical management plan to prevent conflict over access to shipping lanes at low tide is also on the agenda.