Offshore Wind as a Base for a New Sustainable Business

Offshore Wind as a Base for a New Sustainable Business

Almudena Filgueira-Vizoso (University of A Coruña, Spain), Joaquín Enríquez-Díaz (University of A Coruña, Spain), Isabel Lamas-Galdo (University of A Coruña, Spain), Félix Puime Guillén (University of A Coruña, Spain), David Cordal-Iglesias (University of A Coruña, Spain), Begoña Álvarez García (University of A Coruña, Spain) and Laura Castro-Santos (University of A Coruña, Spain)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-7634-2.ch012
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The aim of this chapter is to examine the offshore wind as a pillar for a new sustainable business. In this context, the chapter firstly analyses the significance of renewable energies. Secondly, it analyses several types of offshore renewable energies, the state of offshore wind energy in Europe, and the projections of offshore wind in the world. Thirdly, it presents an overview of the levelized cost of energy (LCOE), comparing its value for different energy technologies. Moreover, a new concept, called SCOE, is introduced to incorporates society in the LCOE equation. Finally, conclusions talk about the importance of choosing a sustainable way of generating electricity in our future.
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During the last years people and Governments are concerned about global warming and how it can affect to our life’s in the future. In this context, the Paris Agreement, which has been adopted at the Paris Climate Conference (COP21) at the end of 2015, tried to limit the increase of temperature of the world up to 2ºC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, 2015).

Spain, as part of the European Union, is among the 190 parties to this Agreement, whose main purpose is to develop policies and climate-neutrality for the present century.

The main agreements of the Paris agreement related to the mitigation process of reducing emissions are (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, 2015):

  • “A long-term goal of keeping the increase in global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels.

  • To aim to limit the increase to 1.5°C, since this would significantly reduce risks and the impacts of climate change.

  • On the need for global emissions to peak as soon as possible, recognizing that this will take longer for developing countries.

  • To undertake rapid reductions thereafter in accordance with the best available science, so as to achieve a balance between emissions and removals in the second half of the century”.

On the other hand, the Madrid Climate Conference (COP25) has took place in Madrid on December 2019. It was carried out in support of Chile, the organizing country, which due to internal circumstances was forced to renounce the organization of acts and events just one month before it began (Madrid Climate Conference (COP25), 2020).

The agreements reached have been reflected in the document “Chile Madrid is time to act”, in which the main points are (Madrid Climate Conference (COP25), 2020):

  • “Calls for an increase in the ambition of the commitments in 2020, following the schedule set at the Paris summit, stressing the “urgent need” for the new commitments of the countries to bridge the existing gap from the current ones with which they would be objectives of the Paris Agreement which according to scientific reports.

  • Countries should be more ambitious regarding their emission reduction commitments (NDCs) in 2020 to respond to the climate emergency.”

Otherwise, during the Madrid Conference, the European Union has activated some measures to deal with the climate emergency in the New Green Deal, which main objective is to “achieve the Climate neutrality in 2050 and agreeing to turn the European Investment Bank (EIB) into a Climate Bank” (Madrid Climate Conference (COP25), 2020). In addition, the EIB announced that it will stop financing fossil energy related projects in 2021 (Madrid Climate Conference (COP25), 2020).

On the other hand, the “Directive 2009/28/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 April 2009 on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources and amending and subsequently repealing Directives 2001/77/EC and 2003/30/EC” (Official Journal of the European Union & EC, 2009) establishes “an overall policy for the production and promotion of energy from renewable sources in the European Union (EU)”. It means that the EU achieve, at least 20% of its total energy needs with renewables by 2020. It makes that each country improve its independence of the fossil fuels in the production of electricity.

This normative has been reviewed in 2018 by the “Directive (EU) 2018/2001 of the European Parliament and of the Council on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources” (EU, 2018) to try to cover the emission reduction objectives achieved in the Paris Conference in 2015. This new directive “establishes a new binding renewable energy target for the EU for 2030 of at least 32%, with a clause for a possible upwards revision by 2023” (EU, 2018). Therefore, it makes more restrictive the directive of 2009, forcing the European countries to be more environmentally friendly regarding the electricity production using renewable sources.

The majority of the new components of the Directive of 2018 need to be transposed into national laws by European member states by 2021. It indicates that all the countries of the EU should adapt their electricity production to renewable energy sources.

Key Terms in this Chapter

SCOE: Calculation of the cost of electricity considering LCOE and society.

Farshore: Far to the shore.

Offshore Wind: Wind energy extracted in offshore locations, far or closed to the shore.

LCOE: Levelized cost of energy. Indicator to characterize the economic evaluation of a type of energy system.

Nearshore: Close to the shore.

Offshore Renewable Energy: Energy extracted using an offshore technology.

Clean Technology: System that produces energy without emitting greenhouse gases.

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