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Vattenfall prepares for Irish ocean energy farms

Vattenfall has acquired 51% of Irish site development company for ocean energy, Pandion Ltd, for €500,000.

Pandion has applied for ocean energy sites on the west coast of Ireland, which will be developed for demonstration to a commercial size – over 250 MW – when it is technically and economically viable. For Vattenfall, the investment in Pandion is a first step towards a position on the emerging ocean energy market.

Helmar Rendez, Senior Vice President Vattenfall AB, explains: “Ireland’s exceptional wave climate, extensive support schemes, strong political support and appointed areas for exploitation of ocean energy makes establishment there favourable. Quick consent processes are foreseen and Vattenfall has an interest to stimulate the development of the market as well as the technical development.

“We will remain independent from technology suppliers, and Pandion is technology neutral. The technologies must be further developed and optimised, and the power system concepts need to be integrated, before the technology can be commercially introduced. Establishment of sites with a potential to grow to commercial sites is important for us to support such a development.”

Vattenfall’s preferential markets for ocean energy are Ireland and the UK, which offer similar physical and economical conditions. Further ventures to establish ocean energy business in the UK and Ireland are therefore “very probable.” However, both markets need new investments in transmission capacity before large investments in ocean energy can be realised, the company says.

The ocean energy developer Wavebob Ltd will hold the remaining 49 % of Pandion and the agreement brings opportunities for further partners to participate.

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Wave and tidal energy