Offshore wind

Planning of the offshore grid and criterias for Utsira Nord

The government has decided to give Statnett the responsibility for the overall planning of the offshore grid. The government will use qualitative criterias in the allocation round of Utsira Nord.

Qualitative criterias were chosen to facilitate innovation and technological development of floating offshore wind. The main model of awarding areas is through an auction model, and the qualitative criterias will therefore differ from the model used for Sørlige Nordsjø II.

— Floating offshore wind has the potential to become an important source of renewable energy, both on the Norwegian continental shelf and on a world basis. By awarding the area of Utsira Nord based on qualitative criterias, we aim to facilitate innovation and technological development that contribute to cost reductions for floating technology, says the Minister of Petroleum and Energy Terje Aasland. 

Actors in the offshore wind market view the auction model as an less desirable model for awarding areas for floating offshore wind, due to high uncertainty and risks associated with technology and cost estimates. The actors have been clear that qualitative criteria are the most desirable allocation model for Utsira Nord, and that the criterias should be clear and objective to facilitate a developing supply industry. 

Floating offshore wind has the potential to contribute to the green transition and create new jobs in Norway, whereNorwegian companies can build upon their skills acquired through the petroleum, maritime and supply industry. 

Statnett as the planner of the offshore grid

The government has decided to give Statnett the responsibility for the overall planning of the offshore grid, in accordance with guidelines set by the Ministry, and based on feedback and dialogue with actors in the offshore wind market.  

— The development of offshore wind must be seen in connection with the onshore power system. To give Statnett the responsibility for the overall planning of the offshore grid is an important clarification that ensures cohesive planning and predictability for the offshore wind actors, says the Minister of Petroleum and Energy Terje Aasland.