Floating centre-stage

Floating wind has over the last two years emerged as one of the game-changers for the next phase of global renewable energy growth, a journey charted at every step by Recharge.

As the home of unrivalled coverage of floating wind, Recharge is naturally placed to host a major digital roundtable on the sector, taking place on 19 May at 1400BST (registration here) with leaders from Iberdrola, Shell, MHI Vestas, Principle Power, Vryhof and Green Giraffe.

Latest news from the sector includes another powerful signal that floating wind is entering the global energy big-league.

Recharge was first to report how French floating wind technology developer Ideol inked a memorandum of understanding with Kerogen Capital, a private equity fund manager with a specialist track-record in the international petroleum sector, to develop first projects in the fast-emerging market for offshore wind-powered oil & gas platforms.

This week also saw the potential arrival of floating wind off South Africa, as Swedish outfit Hexicon linked up with developer Genesis Eco-Energy to explore building utility-scale arrays in the deep waters off the nation’s coasts.

Another sign of burgeoning interest in floating came when Jera – an alliance of two of Japan’s biggest power utilities – joined the special committee devoted to the sector established by global body World Forum Offshore Wind.

Hydrogen on a high

If there’s one sector that can rival floating wind for guaranteed energy transition interest it’s green hydrogen, which generated its usual bumper crop of readers on the Recharge website this week.

The emerging relationship between hydrogen production and offshore wind grew even closer when Shell and Dutch utility Eneco said they’d link H2 production to the 759MW Hollandse Kust North project, if their bid to build the project wins the latest Netherlands auction for wind at sea.

Shell’s decision to join yet another green hydrogen plan is perhaps not surprising, given the results of a survey covered by Recharge that showed the fuel is now central to the energy transition plans of the world’s oil & gas giants. That was further underlined by news that BP is looking at options to start large-scale hydrogen production in Australia for export across Asia.

In Germany, meanwhile, a decision to raise the national offshore wind target to 20GW was explicitly linked by key states to development on a hydrogen economy.

(Ultra) long-life battery

Want to delve into a third energy transition mega-topic? How about battery storage.

Recharge reported this week how secretive US start-up Form Energy is raising market hopes that a novel 150-hour ‘aqueous air’ battery concept will be able guarantee renewable energy output through days of extreme weather.

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