Updated: October 19, 2022 06:35
Greenrock has released a feasibility study for an offshore wind farm in Bermuda (file image)
An offshore wind farm could generate savings of between $15.8 million and $17.9 million per year according to a feasibility study.
According to an independent study conducted by BVG Associates and published by environmental charity Greenrock, a 60 MW farm could generate up to 40% of Bermuda’s electricity at around 30% of the cost of heavy fuel oil currently used.
The report states: “The purpose of this document is to help Bermuda achieve net zero by providing an updated assessment of the energy cost of offshore wind.
“It was commissioned as a follow-up to our previous report Bermuda Offshore Wind: Review of Key Publications and Priority Actions, dated April 2022, which suggested that one of the main uncertainties to be resolved in determining whether offshore wind made sense for Bermuda related to the LCOE.
He added: “Bermuda has a typical power consumption of 50 to 100 megawatts. Historically, Bermuda has used fossil fuels to generate most of its electricity, but also uses small-scale renewables with approximately 13 MW of solar PV.
“It does not have the land area available to meet its electricity demand with land-based renewables – there is room for around 84 MW of solar PV, which would meet a quarter of the electricity demand .
“Offshore wind, however, presents an opportunity for Bermuda to significantly increase its share of renewable energy generation, with a relatively small 60 MW facility capable of meeting around 40% of electricity demand.”
Main results of the study:
• The cost of electricity from offshore wind is likely to vary from $0.152 to $0.158/kWh. Based on our own analysis of Belco’s current cost, at the point of generation, this is about 30% cheaper than generating electricity from fuel oil.
• An offshore wind farm could generate between 3,700 and 3,853 MWh/MW. We calculated that for a 60 MW wind farm, this would represent approximately 40% of Bermuda’s electricity supply.
. Using information from the report, we calculated the potential savings of a 60 MW offshore wind farm between $15.8 and $17.9 million per year at current prices.
• The report includes a detailed cost breakdown to help us understand the sensitivity of the electricity cost projections when applied to different scenarios.
. Upcoming land-use planning studies and computer-based wind resource assessment should further increase confidence in projected energy costs.
Greenrock said a spatial assessment was underway, which would be completed in “a few weeks”.
The charity said: “Having completed an independent review of the work carried out to date a few months ago, Greenrock is pleased to announce the publication of a detailed assessment of the cost of offshore wind energy, which has been designed to help us determine, with confidence, the likely range of costs for electricity supplied by an offshore wind farm in Bermuda.