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Total Opens UK Offshore Wind Hub in North Sea Oil and Gas Fiefdom

Bloomberg
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October 18, 2021

By Francois de Beaupuy (Bloomberg) —

TotalEnergies SE opened an offshore wind hub within its existing center for U.K. North Sea oil and gas, the latest example of fossil-fuel producers shifting to clean energy. 

The center will utilize the offshore expertise that TotalEnergies has built in Aberdeen, Scotland, over the last 50 years, the French company said in a statement on Monday. The move will enable staff to transfer their skills from oil and gas to renewables as that part of the company’s business grows.

“With the energy transition gathering speed, we see Scotland as a great place to broaden our relationship by investing in offshore wind,” TotalEnergies Chief Executive Officer Patrick Pouyanne said in the statement.

The company, which expects global oil demand to peak before 2030 because of the shift to low-carbon energy, purchased a majority stake in a large wind farm off the coast of Scotland last year, and also made an investment in a smaller floating-wind project in Wales. In February, a partnership of TotalEnergies and Macquarie Group Ltd.’s Green Investment Group won rights to develop a 1.5-gigawatt offshore wind farm off the coast of Lincolnshire.

TotalEnergies is also taking part in the ongoing ScotWind leasing round, proposing to develop a 2-gigawatt offshore wind project with Macquarie’s GIG and Scottish developer Renewable Infrastructure Development Group. Should their “West of Orkney” wind farm be selected, the three partners and other third parties would invest 140 million pounds ($192 million) to develop local port infrastructure, help suppliers and train workers, the company said in the statement.

They would also seek to produce green hydrogen on an industrial scale on the island of Flotta in Orkney with power from wind farms, the consortium said this month.   

© 2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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