Norway ramps up offshore wind generation

STORY: Norway is ramping up offshore wind power.

The government has unveiled plans for a major expansion in offshore wind energy by 2040,

aiming to turn a country that has built its wealth on oil and gas into an exporter of renewable electricity.

Norway's centre-left government set a target to develop 30 gigawatts of offshore wind capacity by 2040.

Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Stoere said this would nearly double the country's power output.

The Nordic country believes developing offshore wind will allow it to build on the know-how of its existing energy industry.

A wide range of utilities, oil and gas firms and engineering companies have lined up to develop offshore power projects in Norway.

They include Equinor, Shell, BP, Orsted and Eni.

Norway needs more power for domestic consumption, but the new plan far exceeds the expected demand from households and industry.

The government said a significant portion of the electricity will be exported to other countries.

To date, Norway has opened two North Sea areas for development of up to 4.5 GW of offshore wind.

The first tender for 1.5 GW is expected in late 2022.

The domestic energy industry, which had criticized the government for moving too slowly, welcomed the government's plan.

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