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BW Ideol and ENEOS Will Work to Develop Japan’s Offshore Wind Industry

Japan floating offshore wind
BW Ideol has two demonstration projects installed for its floating wind technology (BW Ideol)

Published Jul 7, 2021 5:45 PM by The Maritime Executive

BW Ideol, which has already been active in the development of Japan’s offshore wind industry, announced a joint development agreement with Japan’s largest oil refiner and distributor, ENEOS Corporation. Through the collaboration, the two companies plan to contribute to the early commercialization of cost-competitive floating offshore wind power in Japan.

The Japanese government outlined an aggressive plan to lead the world in the development and installation of offshore wind power generation. They set an initial target of 10 gigawatts by 2030. By 2040, Japan plans to build 30 to 45 gigawatts of capacity.

BW Ideol is the only floating technology provider with two full-scale floating-wind demonstration projects in operation. In both France and Japan the company launched the demonstration projects in 2018 and 2019 designed to confirm the viability of offshore wind. Working with Japan’s New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) Ideol was responsible for the design and engineering of two foundations (one in steel and the other in concrete) as well as the support of the construction and installation of a 3 MW demonstrator. Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) is seeing to reduce the cost of floating technology to validate the designs to support the development of Japan’s wind power industry.

“This collaboration confirms once again that our two-leg strategy of providing proven technology and investing in the co-development of a project is extremely relevant in the context of a fast-accelerating new industry,” said Paul De La Guérivière, CEO of BW Ideol. “We are pleased to keep on building a multi-GW project portfolio in Japan and add this project to our existing agreements for commercial-scale projects with other leading Japanese developers and utilities, confirming our unique position in this strategic market.”

Japan’s offshore wind projects are currently being developed under the Act on Promoting the Utilization of Sea Areas for the Development of Marine Renewable Energy Power Generation Facilities. Experts have said that the potential of floating offshore wind turbines is three times greater than that of fixed bottom offshore wind as waters around Japan tend to quickly become very deep a few miles from shore. 

ENEOS has been developing a renewable energy business including mega solar power plants, wind power, and biomass power plants across Japan. In the offshore wind power business, ENEOS participated in a project off the coast of Taiwan in April 2019, and in September 2020, ENEOS participated in the development of two projects off the coast of Japan. In June 2021, ENEOS was selected as the operator of a floating offshore wind power generation project off the coast of Goto City in Japan.