TGC plans construction consortium for Taiwan pilot

Offshore wind assets of up to 260MW by 2016

Taiwan Generations Corporation (TGC) is expected to lead the emergence of the island’s nascent offshore wind sector, with well-developed plans for both a two-turbine pilot and a larger, commercial-scale project. It is currently putting together a consortium of companies that will build a pilot project by 2014.

By the end of 2016, the renewables-focused private company expects to boast an offshore wind generating capacity between 160 and 266MW.

TGC cannot proceed with construction of a full-scale offshore wind project at this stage. It must first apply to build one of two pilot projects to be funded by the Taiwanese government. The pilots are designed to test the feasibility of offshore wind off Taiwan’s west coast and to set the stage for meeting a national offshore wind capacity target of 600MW by 2020. There is a further target of 3GW by 2030.

The company began to develop its Changhua offshore pilot project (Copp) in 2004 and expects it be one of the two pilots to win financial support from the Bureau of Energy (BoE). For each of the two pilots, the BoE will fund up to US$8m in development costs and up to 50% in capital expenditure.

The two chosen private developers will be required to connect their pilots to the grid by 2015 and to complete construction a 100-200MW project by 2020.

Another company tipped to win pilot project funding is Swancor, a Taiwanese chemical company whose products include composites for use in electricity supply transmission cables.

However, as previously reported by Windpower Offshore, a large number of companies have shown interest in the pilot scheme (Windpower Offshore 12-Jun-12). Applications are due in October, with the two winners due to be announced in January 2013.

Scaling up

Provided Copp is selected for government support, TGC will announce the members of the project’s construction consortium in January. An environmental impact assessment has already been completed.

It is possible that the companies chosen to support construction of Copp will also win work on TGC’s much-larger Fuhai project. Two firms that have already worked on Copp are UK-headquartered engineering consultancy, Atkins, and Norway’s DNV.

Fuhai offshore wind farm will comprise 52 turbines of an as-yet undetermined size. Total capacity will be 156-260MW, with the smaller figure based on 3MW turbines. TGC has secured a 247.2MW grid connection consent for the project.

In addition to the Fuhai project - and a second 100-200MW offshore wind farm due to be built by the other company whose pilot project wins BoE support - a third commercial offshore wind farm is planned in order to meet the 2020 600MW target. This will be a 200MW project to be built by state-owned Taiwan Power Company and earmarked for a location close to TGC’s Fuhai site.

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