Acciona has launched an offensive in Italy to develop and operate at least six floating offshore wind farms with a combined investment of more than 14.75 billion euros.
The group chaired by José Manuel Entrecanales has already submitted the proposals to the Italian Ministry of Infrastructure and Sustainable Mobility and to the various local port authorities where it intends to locate the projects, and is awaiting the resolutions. Together, the six wind farms have an installed capacity of 4,995 megawatts (MW) through 333 wind turbines of 15 MW each.
The projects are distributed in different points of the transalpine coast, being located, depending on the case, in the Mediterranean Sea, the Ionian Sea, the Sardinian Sea and the Adriatic Sea. These are six proposals designed by the Spanish group, through Acciona Energía Global Italia, which are still in the initial stages of processing. Given the large amount of resources required, it is foreseeable that, if all of them are authorized, Acciona will have to withdraw some of them or look for partners to participate in the financing.
Acciona's commitment in Italy endorses its long-term global growth strategy in the offshore wind business. In February 2021, the company and SSE Renewables signed an exclusive agreement to develop projects in Spain and Portugal and committed to explore joint opportunities in other markets. Months later, in July last year, they agreed to do so in Poland. And on May 30, Acciona Energía announced the acquisition of a 24% stake in the French company Eolink, which specializes in the development of floating structures for offshore wind, thus becoming its largest shareholder.
Acciona's six projects involve the development of floating offshore wind farms.
In addition, the European Commission has recently selected three pilot projects for the deployment of floating offshore wind turbines within the Horizon Europe program, of which the Spanish company is participating in two.
The six projects proposed by Acciona in Italy include the development of floating offshore wind farms and associated infrastructures, such as electrical substations, high-voltage interconnection cables between the wind turbines, submarine cables and land cables that will run along existing road networks until their connection to the National Transmission Network. Likewise, the proposed model includes the operation of the facilities for a period of 30 years.
The parks have an estimated investment of between 1,458 and 3,042 million euros.
The largest of the initiatives, in terms of investment volume, corresponds to a park in the Mediterranean Sea, on the coast of the Port of Gela, a town on the southern coast of Sicily in the province of Caltanissetta. The project will be located some 36 kilometers northeast of the island of Linosa and involves the installation of 68 wind turbines of 15 MW each with floating foundations, for a total capacity of 1,020 MW. The estimated investment is 3,042 million euros.
Also off the Port of Gela, 37 kilometers east of the island of Linini, Acciona is planning a floating offshore wind farm comprising 67 wind turbines with a combined capacity of 1,005 MW. The investment, in its case, amounts to 3,006.7 million euros.
Two projects in the Adriatic
In the coastal waters of the Port of Barletta, in the Adriatic Sea, the company controlled by the Entrecanales family has also submitted two offshore wind power development projects to the Ministry. The first, located 22 kilometers off the coast, consists of 67 wind turbines with a total capacity of 1,005 MW. The resources required in this case amount to 2,982.1 million euros.
The second project, also about 22 kilometers off the coast of Barletta, comprises 62 wind turbines totaling 930 MW of capacity. The estimated investment amounts to 2,652.1 million euros.
In the Sardinian Sea, at least 35 kilometers from the coast, off Porto Torres, in the west of the island of Sardinia, the Spanish firm has designed a wind farm consisting of 32 wind turbines, with an installed capacity of 480 MW, and an investment of 1,458 million euros.
Finally, the sixth project proposed by Acciona is located in the Ionian Sea, more than 23 kilometers off the Calabrian coast at Punta Stilo. With an investment of 1,611.3 million euros and a capacity of 555 MW through 37 wind turbines, the group has already requested authorizations from the Italian government and the Crotone port authority.