Windpark Arcadis Ost 1 is the first wind farm to be built entirely by using floating platforms.
€570 million for Parkwind’s first investment in Germany from the EIB and nine other institutions.
Transaction backed bythe European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI).
The European Investment Bank (EIB) and nine other institutions are providing a total of €570 million to build the Arcadis Ost 1 wind farm — one of the most innovative wind farm projects in Europe — with EIB funding amounting to €150 million. Also contributing are KBC, Belfius, Helaba, KfW, IPEX-Bank, Rabobank, Société Général, ING and EKF.
The EIB loan will benefit from a guarantee from the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the main pillar of the Investment Plan for Europe. Offshore installation works are due to begin in 2022, and the wind farm, which will generate power for the equivalent of 290 000 households, is expected to be fully operational in 2023.
The Belgian wind farm specialist Parkwind will use new, entirely floating platforms to erect the windmills in the Baltic Sea northeast of the island of Rügen. The new technology is expected to be more efficient on difficult seabeds than the jack-up vessels that have normally been used.
So far, Parkwind has implemented wind farm projects exclusively in Belgium, with this German wind farm being the company’s first international project. After winning the competition for this project in 2018, Parkwind obtained its permit from the government of the federal state Mecklenburg-Vorpommern in March 2021.
“The EIB is proud to have acted as the anchor investor together with EFSI for this innovative project,” said EIB Vice-President Ambroise Fayolle, who is responsible for environment, climate action and the circular economy and has oversight of EIB operations in Germany. “Offshore wind farms are a cornerstone of the EU Green Deal to help reach the goal of a net-zero-emissions economy in Europe.”
EU Commissioner for the Economy Paolo Gentiloni said: “To reach our goal of climate neutrality by 2050, we need to massively expand our use of renewable energy sources. This new offshore wind farm, supported by the Investment Plan for Europe and the European Investment Bank, is an important step in this direction. With its innovative, more efficient technologies, it will help to deliver enough clean energy for 290 000 households, providing a major boost to the green transition in Germany.”
Eric Antoons, co-CEO of Parkwind, commented: “Being joined by such a strong group of lenders gives us further confidence in the pursuit of our mission and our ambition to grow internationally. We now focus on delivering the project and contributing to Germany’s transition towards renewable energy sources.”
Energy minister of the German federal state Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Christian Pegel said: “Since the approval of the first offshore wind farm in the German Baltic Sea in 2011, offshore wind has not only contributed to the energy transition, but also to enormous economic development in our region. With Arcadis Ost 1, now the fourth offshore wind farm off the coast of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, we are continuing this success story. In the future, we want to use offshore wind to generate climate-neutral hydrogen, making our region even more attractive for new business settlements.”
Parkwind is an independent green energy company that develops, finances and operates offshore wind farms. With more than a decade of experience and 771 MW under operational management in the Belgian North Sea, Parkwind is currently expanding internationally. With active projects at various stages of development, such as Arcadis Ost 1 (DE) and Oriel (IRL), Parkwind is set to add another 1.1 GW of capacity under its management.
Composed of over 120 professionals operating from offices in Belgium and Ireland, Parkwind leads the offshore wind energy activities of its Belgian shareholder Virya Energy, which is owned by the Colruyt Group and Korys.
About EFSI and the Investment Plan for Europe
The Investment Plan for Europe is one of the EU’s top priorities to boost investment and to create jobs and growth by making smarter use of existing and new financial resources. The EIB Group is playing a vital role in this investment drive. Through guarantees from the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the EIB is able to take on a higher share of project risk, encouraging private finance providers to participate in projects. In addition, EFSI is accompanied by an advisory service, the European Investment Advisory Hub, which enables public and private project operators to structure their investment projects more professionally. The projects and agreements approved for financing under EFSI so far are expected to mobilise €546.5 billion in investments and support more than 1.4 million startups and SMEs across all EU Member States.
With 100 wind turbines, each 115m tall, and a generating capacity of 300MW, the Thanet Offshore Wind Farm is the largest offshore wind farm operating anywhere in the world. Inaugurated in September 2010, it is an important step in enabling the United Kingdom to achieve renewable energy targets and generating 15% of energy needs from renewable sources by 2020.
Europe will support the construction of the “Mermaid” and “Seastar” wind farms off the Belgian coast. This will come in the form of a loan of EUR 250 million, fully guaranteed under the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the central pillar the Juncker Commission’s Investment Plan for Europe. The total project costs around EUR 1.3 billion.
The EIB is lending EUR 156m for the Nordergründe wind farm, which is one of the first offshore wind farm projects developed in Germany. Located in the German coastal part of the North Sea, it will consist of 18 turbines with a total generating capacity of 111 MW. The total cost of this large-scale innovative renewable energy project is EUR 410m.