IRENA, Partners Form Global Alliance to Develop Offshore Wind

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The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) and the government of Denmark are launching the Global Offshore Wind Alliance (GOWA) to drive installed global offshore wind capacity up 670% from 57 GW in 2021 to 380 GW in 2030.

“A massive increase in energy from offshore wind is key to fight climate change, phase out fossil fuels and strengthen energy security,” says Danish Minister for Climate, Energy and Utilities Dan Jørgensen. “We cannot do it alone but must work together across the public and private sectors as well as across countries and regions. The Global Offshore Wind Alliance will be a platform to do just that. Denmark became home to the world’s first offshore wind farm in 1991. We have extensive experience in the field and a long history of sharing it with the rest of the world. We are looking forward to joining forces with partners who share our vision and ambitions.”

According to forecasts by IRENA and the International Energy Agency (IEA), 2,000 GW of installed offshore wind capacity will be needed in order to keep the goal of limiting global temperatures to 1.5°C within reach and achieve net zero by 2050. Yet, global installed offshore wind capacity only totaled 57 GW in 2021.

“While each country needs to take its own domestic action to address climate change, the current crisis requires us to all work together to make meaningful progress,” states Laura Daniel-Davis, principal deputy assistant secretary of Land and Minerals Management at U.S. Department of the Interior. “The Global Offshore Wind Alliance will give us an opportunity to do just that, and the U.S. intends to become a member when it is formally launched later this year. We recognize the value in global cooperation on offshore wind and the critical need for each country to do its part in tackling the climate crisis, and we hope that many others will join us as well. It’s through collaboration that we can build a more sustainable future for everyone.”

GOWA will work to raise ambition on offshore wind amongst governments and other public and private stakeholders. It will support the creation of policy frameworks and efficient offshore wind value chains to bring new and existing markets to maturity through e.g., sharing of best practices and capacity building. In addition, it will create an international community of practice to drive action on offshore wind deployment as a key to achieving 1.5 degrees pathways.

“I believe the Global Offshore Wind Alliance can accelerate development of offshore wind globally,” adds Norwegian Minister of Petroleum and Energy Terje Aasland. “Norway has high ambitions for offshore wind. With our offshore oil and gas and maritime experience, our companies can play an important role in developing floating offshore wind. International cooperation is essential if we shall succeed.”

“Energy security and the brutal energy crisis are forcing us to re-evaluate our world,” mentions Francesco La Camera, director-general at IRENA. “Offshore wind technology is the gateway to new sites leveraging high-wind resources. We can all benefit from wind farms built at gigawatt scale making them an important addition to the world’s technology portfolio. A blue economy driven by renewables also brings socioeconomic benefits to coastal communities. But to truly succeed, we need greater cooperation, and this is why the Global Offshore Wind Alliance can help by creating the partnerships necessary to drive the global energy transition across oceans and land.”

“Being a global offshore wind pioneer, CIP congratulates the forming of the new and important Global Offshore Wind Alliance (GOWA), which can become a much-needed green catalyst for increased offshore wind build-out to address climate and energy issues,” adds Stig Pastwa, COO at Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners. “We need pace, predictability and faster permitting from all involved players to make the needed progress – and I hope that we can leverage GOWA as a joint public-private partnership to ensure action. At CIP, we remain committed to support GOWA’s efforts going forward and will continue to contribute to the significant build-out of renewables globally – or as we call it: build value that matters.”

“The wind industry is uniting with governments and UN institutions on a mission to drive a 670 percent uplift in installed global wind capacity by 2030,” says Ben Backwell, CEO of Global Wind Energy Council. “There couldn’t be a more crucial time for this Alliance. Dependence on volatile fossil fuels has created energy security and cost of living crises while driving runaway global heating. With offshore wind, the world has an effective solution for adding large amounts of zero carbon power at affordable costs, while creating jobs and new investments in industry and infrastructure all around the world.”

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