Cable failures account for most of offshore wind losses
Offshore wind farm. Author: Mark Freeth. License: Creative Commons
Subsea cable incidents are responsible for a big part of financial losses in the global offshore wind industry, according to a report by GCube Underwriting Ltd.
The specialist renewable energy underwriter said that cable faults led to insurance claims totalling more than EUR 60 million (USD 67m) in 2015.
The offshore wind sector on average declares at least 10 subsea cable failures to insurers each year. The incidents may not be very frequent, but their financial severity continues to grow to the effect of accounting for 77% of the total global cost of offshore wind farm losses, GCube said.
It has found that two-thirds of cable faults recorded in its claims database can be attributed to contractor errors during installation, even if they do not become evident until the wind farms starts operations. The issue can cause 100 days or more of unscheduled project delays and create substantial cost overruns, so it is important for the industry to start to address it, the company says.
"Cable installation techniques and monitoring technology are continuing to evolve as the industry looks to address this challenge – however recurring losses are still commonplace, and the number of ‘repeat offenders’ is a source of concern for the insurance industry," said Jatin Sharma, GCube head of business development and author of the report.