Aker, DNV present 10-GW floating wind-powered H2 project for Scotland

Image: Aker Offshore Wind.

November 5 (Renewables Now) - Aker companies and DNV on Thursday presented a vision for a hydrogen refinery on Shetland in Scotland to be fuelled by 10 GW of floating offshore wind in the North Sea.

The plan, called the Northern Horizons Project, was unveiled at the COP 26 climate summit in Glasgow by Aker Offshore Wind and Aker Clean Hydrogen, portfolio companies of Aker Horizons ASA (OSE:AKH), the majority-owned renewables platform of Norway’s Aker ASA (FRA:FKM), together with assurance and risk management specialist DNV, also of Norway.

The project envisages 10 GW of “giant” wind turbines on floaters more than 130 km (81 miles) from Shetland powering multiple floating installations that will produce green hydrogen. The hydrogen will be transmitted to a net-zero hydrogen refinery on Shetland, which, powered by floating wind, will produce zero-carbon energy products such as ammonia, liquid hydrogen and synthetic fuels for local use and export. The project could be in operation from 2030.

The team behind the plan will now start consultations with governments and businesses to mature the idea towards an investment decision in the future.

The companies said the project is in response to the Scottish government's ambition to harness Scotland's resources to become a significant hydrogen exporter and its target of 5 GW of hydrogen production by 2030.

"This is a technically and economically feasible plan to deliver floating offshore wind at the scale needed to deliver clean energy products which can be used to help decarbonise fuel-heavy industries such as shipping and aviation," said Lloyd-Rees, managing director of Aker Offshore Wind UK.

Ditlev Engel, chief executive of energy systems at DNV, said that to meet the Paris Agreement targets extending the reach of renewable energy to hard-to-abate sectors through conversion to green hydrogen and synthetic fuels will be needed.

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Plamena has been a UK-focused reporter for many years. As part of the Renewables Now team she is taking a keen interest in policy moves.

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