23 kilometres off from Helgoland, a joint venture by Blackstone Energy Partners from the U.S. and Berlin-based Windland Energieerzeugungs GmbH, the project’s initial permit holder, inaugurated the country’s largest fully financed offshore wind farm, Meerwind Süd│Ost. Started in late 2012, construction was completed after 18 iin months in summer 2014, when extensive texting started. With its 80 turbines of the 3,6 MW-class, the offshore wind farm will feed up to 288 MW into the public grid, and thus secure the provision of clean and sustainable energy to up to 360,000 households. Up to one million tonnes of emissions will thus be saved.
Built with U.S. Investor
Meerwind is the first German wind farm to be fully financed by private investors under the Offshore Wind Programme, the KfW programme. The 1.2 billion euro investment funds the installation of 80 substructures (monopile foundations) with Siemens 3.6MW-120 wind turbines, the laying of infield cables, as well as the installation of the offshore high voltage substation. Connection to the main grid, as per German law, has been undertaken by the grid operator Tennet TSO GmbH.
Winds of Change at Helgoland
The red rocky island in the North Sea, administered by the Pinneberg district of Hamburg Metropolitan Region, has undergone major changes since the start of the German energy transition. Once mainly living from tourism and tax-free shopping, Helgoland successfully transformed itself into the world first offshore service island for the wind industry. Its port has been expanded and adopted to the industry’s need in a 30 million euro overhaul, and new homes have been built for the growing number of technicians and wind industry workers now living on the island. After WindMV’s Meerwind Süd│Ost, two more wind farms are about to start operations shortly. And also E.ON (Amrumbank West) and RWE (North East) have selected Helgoland as a service port.