Orsted will be a partner in plans for a green hydrogen facility it said could grow to 3GW of electrolysis capacity – among the most ambitious planned in Europe so far – to tap massive future offshore wind capacity in its home waters off Denmark.

Orsted signed a letter of intent with Danish renewables developer Skovgaard Energy for the ‘power-to-x’ facility in Idomlund, western Denmark, described by the partners as “an optimal strategic location enabling significant scaling of the project”.

Although the initial phase of the planned project would be around 150MW of electrolysis powered by onshore wind and solar, the partners left no doubt that the biggest prize lies offshore.

“Idomlund is expected to be the landfall for parts of the huge offshore wind build-out in the North Sea, which enables easy access to very large renewable energy resources,” said a statement.

The pair said the project’s eventual electrolysis capacity could top 3GW “if the necessary offshore wind capacity and hydrogen infrastructure in and out of Denmark are established”.

That would allow major exports of green hydrogen and go a long way to meeting Denmark’s domestic goal to have 4-6GW of electrolysis in place by 2030, they added.

Denmark is pursuing ambitious policies to turn itself into a European “green powerhouse” with a tendering programme to help push the nation to 12.9GW of offshore wind by 2030 and has laid plans for some of the world’s first ‘energy islands’ linking wind at sea with hydrogen and other green fuels.

Home-grown global offshore wind pacesetter Orsted has set out its own plans to be part of that, including an alliance with compatriot Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP) to advance 5GW of subsidy-free offshore wind in the Danish North Sea and Baltic.

Anders Nordstrøm, chief operating officer of Orsted P2X, said: “Few countries have as strong a potential to become a green energy exporter as Denmark due to its abundant and low-cost offshore wind resources, which are supplemented by onshore wind and solar PV.

“By partnering with Skovgaard Energy on the Idomlund project, Orsted is entering one of the most strategically advantageous projects to leverage the strong fit between large-scale renewable energy and power-to-x."