ONGC to tender for 10-turbine offshore pilot

India's western oil & gas fields earmarked wind energy

One of Asia’s largest oil and gas companies, India’s Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), plans to install offshore wind generating capacity within the boundaries of its existing western offshore oil and gas production field.

An initial 10-turbine pilot with a minimum capacity of 15MW is being planned. If successful, this could be followed by a 500MW commercial-scale project.

ONGC plans to announce a tender for development of the pilot around the end of this month, a spokesperson told Windpower Offshore.

Earlier this year, the company called for expressions of interest from consultancies capable of assisting ONGC with assessment of project feasibility, technology selection, grid connectivity, permitting and incentives, contract and project management as well as development of an operations and maintenance strategy. An information day was held last month in Mumbai, with almost twenty consultancies in attendance.

Prior to this call, ONGC had been advised by one of its own research bodies, the Institute of Oil and Gas Production Technology (IOGPT).

"The pilot project is at an initial stage and it is very early to comment on the investment needed," said the spokesperson. "The project will be developed in an area where water depth is 20-30m."

India has yet to introduce specific policies or financial incentives to support development of offshore wind. ONGC’s interest in harnessing wind resources within its 800km² western oil and gas field may be a key factor behind the Indian government’s recent decision to establish a cross-ministry steering committee to develop offshore wind policy. ONGC currently operates oil and gas offshore platforms 30-200km from shore.

While predominantly an oil and gas company, ONGC has invested in onshore wind. Its onshore wind assets include a 51MW wind farm in Gujurat.

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