Independent French developer, Nass&Wind Offshore, is preparing to bid for one of two sites that will be part of the country’s second offshore wind tender, due to be launched by the end of the year. The company is focusing on the Noirmoutier site as well as preparing for a likely third tender.
The company has data for several sites, including the Noirmoutier zone, explained Xavier Ferrey, Nass&Wind communications director, speaking with Windpower Offshore.
Nass&Wind partnered with EDF to develop a first tender project, the 480MW Saint Nazaire site. However, Ferrey says Nass & Wind is in discussions with other potential partners about its future bids.
The Noirmoutier zone lies roughly 16km west of the island of Noirmoutier, 13km north of Ile d'Yeu and 21km off the mainland. The zone covers approximately 80km², and is earmarked for up to 600MW in waters 18-35m deep.
Consortia that include WPD and Neoen Marine are also likely to bid for the Noirmoutier zone.
The nearest major port is Saint Nazaire, which is already scheduled to become one of France’s offshore wind hub. Alstom plans to manufacture nacelles and generators at the port, while STX plans to build jacket foundations.
Looking further ahead, Nass&Wind is carrying out initial feasibility studies at several sites along the North Sea and Channel coasts. Among them is a site off Le Tréport, although not within the zone to be offered in the second tender. Instead, it covers a wider area that Nass&Wind hopes will feature in a third round.
The French government originally scheduled two tenders, but at least three will be necessary to meet its 2020 6GW offshore wind target. Nass&Wind is in talks with energy minister officials tasked with selecting future zones, confirms Ferrey.
The developer is also involved in the floating offshore wind project, WinFlo.