EDF Renewables, a subsidiary of the EDF Group, and Enbridge, a North American energy infrastructure company, appreciate the ruling by the Conseil d’Etat, France’s supreme administrative court. It brings to a close the appeal against the Saint-Nazaire offshore wind farm project’s operating permit.
The ruling will allow further development of the project, with the intent of a final investment decision. It serves as a clear endorsement of the robustness of offshore wind and this project — led by the Eolien Maritime France company (EMF), and jointly controlled by EDF Renewables and Enbridge. All the administrative permits required for the construction and operational phases of the project are now secured.
EMF has won the competitive bidding for the three offshore wind farm projects at Courseulles-sur-Mer, Fécamp and Saint-Nazaire in 2012 when the French government launched its first call for tenders in the sector.
“The Conseil d’Etat’s decision is a ringing endorsement of the robust groundwork undertake by EDF Renewables’ and Enbridge’s teams which have been working for 10 years with professionalism, openness, and dedication on bringing the Saint-Nazaire offshore wind project through to fruition,” said Bruno Bensasson, EDF Group’s Senior Executive VP of Renewable Energies, and Chairman and CEO of EDF. I also wish to salute the backing for the project we received from the local parties. It allowed us to be ready to open the way for marine renewable energies to take shape in France. It will deliver a boost to the local economy.”
GE Renewable Energy also released a statement, welcoming the decision rendered by the Conseil d’État, which clears the way for its customer, Eolien Maritime France, to proceed with one of its offshore wind projects in France. “This is a significant step for offshore wind in France, and we are excited to be part of it. GE remains committed to execute one offshore wind project and our team in St Nazaire will move forward with the assembly of the Haliade-150 6-MW once Éolien Maritime France reaches financial close and issues the Notice-to-proceed,” stated GE.
The future 480-MW offshore wind farm will generate the equivalent of 20% of Loire-Atlantique department demand for electricity. It will make a significant contribution towards the French government’s objective of generating 32% of the electricity it consumes from renewable sources by 2030.
The project was developed with highly extensive environmental studies and wide-ranging consultation over more than 10 years by EDF Renewables and its partners in the area – local authorities, the region’s population, sea users and chiefly fishing professionals, environmental organizations, and local economic and social development agencies.
The Conseil d’Etat ruling will enable EDF Renewables and Enbridge to make progress with the project financing process before the investment is given its final go-ahead.