Joint venture partners SSE Renewables and Equinor have reached financial close on Dogger Bank Wind Farm C, the third phase of what will be the world’s largest offshore wind farm when complete in March 2026.
SSE Renewables and Equinor are already constructing the first two phases of the 3.6GW Dogger Bank Wind Farm with Eni, joint venture partner on phases A and B of the world-leading offshore wind project to be installed off the north east coast of England. Now, with financial close being reached on the project’s third phase, Dogger Bank Wind Farm has passed the last important milestone ahead of its construction delivery programme.
Total investment in Dogger Bank Wind Farm will be around £9 billion, of which around £3 billion is for phase C including offshore transmission capex in the range of £900-1000m.
Dogger Bank C has a capacity of 1,200MW and will generate around 6TWh. In total, Dogger Bank will produce enough clean, renewable electricity to supply 5% of the UK’s demand, equivalent to powering six million UK homes.
Dogger Bank A and B is a joint venture between SSE Renewables (40%), Equinor (40%) and Eni (20%). On 2 November 2021 SSE and Equinor announced the sell down of a combined 20% share in Dogger Bank C to Eni (10% each) for a total consideration of £140m. The transaction is expected to close in Q1 2022, subject to regulatory and lenders approvals and customary purchase price adjustments. Eni will enter the asset effective from completion of the sell down transaction. Once the transaction is complete, the new overall shareholding in Dogger Bank C will be SSE Renewables (40%), Equinor (40%) and Eni (20%). Extended partner alignment will enable further synergies across, both in the construction and operations phase of the Dogger Bank wind farm.
Dogger Bank Wind Farm is pioneering new technology and breaking world records in its delivery including green financing records. Financial close on Dogger Bank C has been reached through the financing support of a group of lenders comprising 28 banks and three export credit agencies (ECAs). Taken in aggregate with the financing last year of the A and B phases of the Dogger Bank project, reaching Financial Close on all three phases of Dogger Bank Wind Farm is the largest offshore wind project financing to date globally.
Alistair Phillips-Davies, SSE Chief Executive, said: “It is a fantastic achievement to be reaching financial close on the third phase of the world’s largest offshore wind project, just weeks after COP26 concluded in Glasgow and today marks an important early milestone in the delivery of our own Net Zero Acceleration Programme. Our plans will enable delivery of over 25% of UK’s 2030 40GW offshore wind target, whilst also expanding overseas, delivering over 20% of upcoming UK electricity networks investment and deploying the critical flexibility technologies to provide security of supply.
“Construction is well underway on the first two phases of Dogger Bank with work on the third phase already progressing and we look forward to this ramping up in the New Year. As well as providing clean, green power, Dogger Bank is enabling the planned GE blade manufacturing plant in Teesside and a huge number of direct and indirect jobs.”
Pål Eitrheim, Equinor EVP of New Energy Solutions, said: “Reaching financial close on the third phase of Dogger Bank is a significant milestone as it demonstrates that we are on track with developing what will become the world’s largest offshore wind farm. The extensive interest from lenders underpins the attractiveness of UK offshore wind assets and the confidence in SSE and Equinor as developers. The level of interest achieved reflects the quality of the project and enables strong return on equity. As the wind farm’s future operator, we will leverage our offshore execution capability and continue to deliver value for years to come.”
Dogger Bank C is being project financed with gearing of c.70% for the generation assets. Gearing on the transmission facilities is set at 90% of the forecast OFTO sale proceeds, in line with standard market practice in the sector. Total senior debt facilities is around £2.5 billion plus ancillary facilities of around £435 million.
With the strong interest from lenders, Dogger Bank C was able to secure competitive terms, despite continued impact from the coronavirus pandemic on the macroeconomic environment. The final group of lenders includes experienced lenders, many of which are relationship lenders of both SSE and Equinor. The majority of lenders are the same as for the financing of Dogger Bank A and B, reached in November 2020. A list of Dogger Bank C lenders, ECA and Advisors is available to download here.
SSE Renewables is leading on the development and construction of Dogger Bank Wind Farm, and Equinor will operate the wind farm on completion for its expected operational life of around 35 years.
About Dogger Bank Wind Farm
Dogger Bank Wind Farm was awarded exclusive development rights in 2010 by The Crown Estate as part of its third seabed licensing round. The project secured planning consent in 2015. In September 2019, Dogger Bank Wind Farm secured the following 15-year contracts with the Low Carbon Contracts Company (LCCC) through the UK Government’s Contract for Difference (CfD) auction:
- Dogger Bank A (1,200MW) with a strike price of £39.65/MWh (in 2012 prices, CPI-indexed) for delivery in 2023/24.
- Dogger Bank B and C (1,200MW each) with strike prices of £41.61/MWh (in 2012 prices, CPI-indexed) for delivery in 2024/25.
Onshore cable installation civils works for Dogger Bank C will start in Q1 2022; construction of the onshore convertor station will commence in Q2 2022. Offshore export cable installation will commence in Q1 2024; Offshore platform installation will commence in Q2, 2024; foundation installation will commence in Q3, 2024; Turbine installation will commence in Q2, 2025. First power is anticipated in Q3, 2025 and full power in Q1, 2026.
Onshore construction is currently underway for Dogger Bank A and Dogger Bank B, with offshore construction on Dogger Bank A due to begin in Q2 2022. First power is expected in Summer 2023 and Summer 2024 for Dogger Bank A and B, respectively, with commercial operations to follow around six months later.
Dogger Bank Wind Farm has signed a contract with Jan De Nul Group for the transport and installation of 87 GE Haliade-X 14 MW offshore wind turbines at the final Dogger Bank C phase of the project, located up to 200 km off the UK’s Yorkshire coast. This third contract award follows the signature in 2020 of packages A and B, each featuring 95 units of 13 MW turbines. The contract is subject to Dogger Bank C reaching Financial Close in late 2021.
The 3.6GW Dogger Bank Wind Farm, which is being delivered in the North Sea in three 1.2GW phases, is set to be the world’s largest offshore wind farm when complete. The third phase Dogger Bank C is owned by SSE Renewables (50%) and Equinor (50%) and is being developed on a different timescale to Dogger Bank A and B, which are joint venture phases between Equinor (40%), SSE Renewables (40%) and Eni (20%). Once operational, the overall Dogger Bank Wind Farm will generate enough energy to power over 6 million UK homes every year.
Under this latest contract Jan De Nul Group will mobilise its newest Next Gen Offshore Jack-Up Installation Vessel ‘Voltaire’ for the delivery and installation of the 14 MW turbines at Dogger Bank C. The vessel, which will have a lifting capacity of over 3,000 tonnes, is currently under construction and will enter into service in 2022. With the ‘Voltaire’ now committed to turbine transportation and installation at all three phases of the project, Dogger Bank Wind Farm will be the vessel’s first assignment.
The ‘Voltaire’ is named after the pioneering European Enlightenment philosopher and is fitted with a highly advanced exhaust filtering system by means of a Selective Catalytic Reduction system and a Diesel Particulate Filter, making it the very first seagoing installation vessel of its kind to be a Stage V-certified Ultra-Low Emission vessel (ULEv).
Steve Wilson, Dogger Bank Wind Farm’s Project Director at SSE Renewables, said: “Jan De Nul Group has a great track record for the transportation and installation of turbines on scale, and offshore wind farms don’t come any bigger than ours. With a lifting capacity of more than 3,000 tonnes, the ultra-clean Voltaire vessel is set to become the world’s largest jack-up vessel when it enters service in 2022. Securing this state-of-the-art vessel for all three phases of Dogger Bank Wind Farm is another reminder of how we’re working with our suppliers to drive innovation in offshore wind.”
Halfdan Brustad, Vice President for Dogger Bank at Equinor, said: “We are extremely pleased to have secured the Voltaire for the third phase of Dogger Bank, as it will follow the turbine installations for phases A and B. By the time Dogger Bank Wind Farm is complete, this low emissions vessel will have installed 277 of the world’s most powerful turbines at the world’s biggest offshore wind farm; quite a feat for the Voltaire’s first assignment! This continued contract with Jan de Nul demonstrates world class innovation delivering at scale, both important factors in ensuring we build Dogger Bank as efficiently and sustainably as possible.”
Philippe Hutse, Director Offshore Division at Jan De Nul Group, said: “Dogger Bank Wind Farm is exactly the type of project we had in mind when we took the decision to build our Voltaire. The scale and characteristics of the offshore Dogger Bank and turbines offer the perfect challenge for this Next Gen Offshore Jack-Up Installation Vessel. We are proud to be recognised in our choices and look forward to working together with industry leaders SSE Renewables and Equinor on the Dogger Bank C phase of this world-leading project. We are excited to take part in the worldwide transition to renewable energies by installing the offshore wind turbines at Dogger Bank A, B and C in the most efficient and clean manner possible.”
Dogger Bank Wind Farm secured 3.6 GW of offshore wind contracts in the UK Government’s 2019 contracts for difference auctions. Record low prices were awarded for the three projects making up Dogger Bank Wind Farm: Dogger Bank A, Dogger Bank B and Dogger Bank C. Dogger Bank C is planned to reach financial close by the end of 2021.
SSE Renewables is leading the development and construction phases of Dogger Bank Wind Farm and Equinor will lead on operations for its lifetime of up to 35 years.
Dogger Bank Wind Farm and GE Renewable Energy have today confirmed GE as preferred turbine supplier for Dogger Bank C, announcing at the same time plans to pioneer the upscaled 14MW Haliade-X turbine for this phase.
The 14MW Haliade-X is an upscaled version of the 13MW Haliade-X, the most powerful turbine in operation today, and installation at Dogger Bank C will mark the first time these turbines will be installed at any project world-wide.
The Turbine Supply Agreement and Service and Warranty Agreements for Dogger Bank C will be finalised in the first quarter of 2021, confirming the order and number of turbines and marking continued progress in the delivery of the third phase of the wind farm. These agreements will be subject to Dogger Bank C, which is a joint venture between SSE Renewables and Equinor, reaching Financial Close in late 2021.
Installation of the turbines for Dogger Bank C is set to begin in 2025 ahead of completion of the overall project in 2026.
At 3.6GW Dogger Bank will be the largest wind farm in the world, capable of generating enough renewable power to provide around 5% of the UK’s electricity demand. It is being built in three 1.2GW phases; Dogger Bank A, B and C.
GE is now confirmed as supplying Haliade-X turbine technology to all three phases of Dogger Bank Wind Farm including a record-breaking order for 190 units of GE’s 13MW Haliade-X for phases A and B.
Steve Wilson, Dogger Bank Wind Farm’s Project Director at SSE Renewables, said: “We’re delighted to be working with GE Renewable Energy on all three phases of our development, as the first wind farm in the world to install their innovative and record-breaking Haliade-X turbine technology. Together with GE we are continuing to lead the way on innovation in the offshore wind industry and we’re proud that Dogger Bank will now use a 14MW turbine at Dogger Bank C alongside the 13MW turbine already confirmed for phases A and B.”
John Lavelle, President & CEO, Offshore Wind at GE Renewable Energy, said: “Dogger Bank C will use a 14MW version of the Haliade-X, the most powerful offshore wind turbine in operation today. In doing so, this unique project will both continue to build on the UK’s leadership in offshore wind and serve as a showcase for innovative technology that is helping to provide more clean, renewable energy.”
Halfdan Brustad, vice president for Dogger Bank at Equinor, said: “Once again, GE has demonstrated competitiveness with its ground-breaking Haliade-X, and we are delighted we will be working with them across all three phases of Dogger Bank Wind Farm. Turbine innovation has played a huge role in bringing down the cost of offshore wind, and these world-leading turbines will help us deliver renewable electricity at the lowest cost possible for millions of people across the UK. With our partner SSE Renewables, we are pioneering new technology whilst delivering a project that will create hundreds of skilled jobs. As operator for the project, we look forward to working with the GE team for many years to come.”
Located over 130 km off the north east coast of England, each phase of Dogger Bank Wind Farm will be able to produce 6TWh of renewable electricity, totalling 18TWh annually, equivalent to powering six million UK homes each year.
For further information:
Media contact – Dogger Bank Wind Farm:
Jason Cooke, SSE Renewables
+353 (0) 86 264 6710
Rachel Lawrence, SSE Renewables
+44 (0) 7385 368783
HALIADE-X 14 MW FIGURES
- 14 MW capacity
- 220-metre rotor
- 248 metres high
- 107-metre long blades
- 38,000 m2 swept area
IECRE Provisional RNA Component Certificate.
According to EPA Greenhouse gas equivalencies calculator
About Dogger Bank Wind Farm:
- Dogger Bank Wind Farm will be the world’s largest offshore wind farm when completed in 2026.
- It is being built in three phases: Dogger Bank A, B and C.
- Dogger Bank A and B is a joint venture between SSE Renewables (40%), Equinor (40%) and Eni (20%). Dogger Bank C is a 50:50 joint venture between SSE Renewables and Equinor.
- SSE Renewables is lead operator for the development and construction of Dogger Bank Wind Farm. Equinor will be lead operator of the wind farm for the duration of the wind farm’s operational phase
- Financial Close on Dogger Bank A and Dogger Bank B was reached in November 2020. Financial Close for Dogger Bank C is expected in late 2021.
- Consent for Dogger Bank Wind Farm was granted in 2015.
- Dogger Bank Wind Farm is located in the North Sea, with each phase more than 130km from the Yorkshire Coast.
- Onshore construction began in 2020 and is currently underway for Dogger Bank A and Dogger Bank B, with offshore construction on Dogger Bank A due to begin in Q2 2022. First power is expected in Summer 2023 and Summer 2024 for Dogger Bank A and B, respectively, with commercial operations to follow around 6 months later.
- Turbine installation for Dogger Bank C will begin in 2025.
- A total of 320 skilled jobs for the North East of England associated with the development and operation of Dogger Bank Wind Farm have been announced so far.
- This includes 120 skilled jobs at marshalling harbour Able Seaton Port in Hartlepool during construction, and 200 skilled jobs to be based offshore and at the Port of Tyne for Operations and Maintenance of the wind farm once operational.
- Dogger Bank A and B has confirmed GE’s 13MW Haliade-X as the turbine powering the first two phases of the project. As the first order for the 13MW Haliade-X, installation at Dogger Bank A will be the first time the turbine is installed in the world.
- Dogger Bank C will install GE’s upscaled 14MW Haliade-X turbine.
- One rotation of the Haliade-X turbine blades can power one UK home for more than two days.
- The wind turbines will be installed on monopile foundations.
- The project will be the first High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) connected wind farm in the UK due to its distance from shore.
About SSE Renewables
SSE Renewables is a leading developer, owner and operator of renewable energy across the UK and Ireland, with a portfolio of around 4GW of onshore wind, offshore wind and hydro. Part of the FTSE-listed SSE plc, its strategy is to drive the transition to a net zero future through the world class development, construction and operation of renewable energy assets.
SSE Renewables owns nearly 2GW of operational onshore wind capacity t. Its 1,459MW hydro portfolio includes 300MW of pumped storage and 750MW of flexible hydro. Its operational offshore wind portfolio consists of 487MW across two offshore joint venture sites, Beatrice and Greater Gabbard, both of which it operates on behalf of its asset partners.
SSE Renewables is aiming to treble its renewable energy output by 2030. In addition to Dogger Bank Wind Farm, SSE Renewables is currently leading the construction of the Seagreen 1 offshore wind farm (1,075MW, SSE Renewables share: 49%) and is developing the Berwick Bank and Marr Bank offshore wind farms (up to 4,150MW) in Scotland, North Falls (up to 504MW, SSE Renewables share: 50%) in England, and Arklow Bank Wind Park Phase 2 (520MW) in Ireland. Onshore it is constructing the Viking wind farm (443MW) in Shetland and Gordonbush Extension (38MW) and has a further 1GW of onshore wind in development.
SSE Renewables is a Principal Partner to the UK Government for COP26 UN climate summit taking place in Glasgow in November 2021.
About Equinor in the UK
Equinor has been operating in the UK for over 35 years. Headquartered in Norway, the company employs 22,000 people globally, and over 650 in the UK. As a broad energy company, Equinor is committed to long term value creation in a low carbon future, and targeting carbon neutral operations globally by 2030.
Equinor is the UK’s leading energy provider and supports the UK economy by investing billions in crucial energy infrastructure, working with over 700 suppliers across the country. Its energy supplies from Norway meet more than one quarter of the UK’s demand for natural gas and around one fifth of its demand for oil, both produced with one of the lowest carbon footprints in the industry. It operates the Mariner oil field, one of the largest and most digitally advanced offshore investments in the UK over the last decade, and is progressing Rosebank, the largest undeveloped field in the UK.
Both projects support hundreds of jobs and economic activity in Scotland. Equinor also operates two offshore wind farms off the East Coast of England, Dudgeon and Sheringham Shoal. It is a pioneer in floating wind technology with Hywind Scotland, the world’s first floating wind farm off the coast of Peterhead, which is partnered with Batwind, the world’s first battery for offshore wind. And with its partner SSE Renewables, Equinor is building the largest offshore wind farm in the world, Dogger Bank, off the North East coast of England. It is also a leader in both carbon capture utilisation and storage (CCUS) and hydrogen, and is developing a number of projects in Europe, including in the Humber and Teesside regions of North East England.
About GE Renewable Energy
GE Renewable Energy is a $15 billion business which combines one of the broadest portfolios in the renewable energy industry to provide end-to-end solutions for our customers demanding reliable and affordable green power. Combining onshore and offshore wind, blades, hydro, storage, utility-scale solar, and grid solutions as well as hybrid renewables and digital services offerings, GE Renewable Energy has installed more than 400+ gigawatts of clean renewable energy and equipped more than 90 percent of utilities worldwide with its grid solutions. With nearly 40,000 employees present in more than 80 countries, GE Renewable Energy creates value for customers seeking to power the world with affordable, reliable and sustainable green electrons.
GE Renewable Energy’s Haliade-X prototype, which is to be used in the first two phases of the Dogger Bank Wind Farm, is now operating at a 13MW power output following optimisation.
The Haliade-X 13MW offshore wind turbine will be used in the first two phases of UK’s Dogger Bank Wind Farm, with a total of 190 units to be installed starting in 2023. This will mark the first installation of the world’s most powerful wind turbine at what will be the world’s biggest offshore wind farm.
GE Renewable Energy’s Haliade-X prototype is now operating at a 13MW power
During the next few months, this prototype will undergo a series of tests to perform different types of measurements and obtain its type certificate.
The Haliade-X 13MW, which is an uprated version of the prototype that has been successfully operating in Rotterdam since November 2019, recently secured its provisional type certificate and set a new world record by generating 288 MWh in one day.
This uprated 13MW Haliade-X version will continue to feature 107m long blades and a 220m rotor, and will be able to generate 4% more Annual Energy Production (AEP) than the previous 12MW version of the prototype.
Vincent Schellings, Chief Technology Officer for Offshore Wind at GE Renewable Energy, said “With three years in the making, the Haliade-X platform has proven to be a successful story. Combined with almost 5GW of customer commitments and an international testing and R&D program, the 13MW uprated version is a true testament of how we continue to innovate and develop our Haliade-X technology to address our customers’ needs.”
The Haliade-X platform serial production will start in the second half of 2021 at GE’s Saint-Nazaire factory in France.
The Rotterdam-based prototype set a new world record in January 2020 by generating 288 MWh of continuous power in one day. It has also been recognised as the Best Sustainable Invention of the Year by TIME magazine (December 2019) and Best Wind Turbine of the Year (January 2020) by Wind Power Monthly magazine.
Steve Wilson, Dogger Bank Wind Farm’s Project Director at SSE Renewables, said: “These record-breaking turbines are once again demonstrating exactly why they’ve been selected for the world’s biggest offshore wind farm. This innovative technology will be installed for the first time in the world, on the first two phases of Dogger Bank Wind Farm. Not only will this mark a significant milestone for the offshore wind industry, it will also lead to the creation of skilled jobs to support the construction and maintenance of this ground-breaking project.”