German Offshore Wind Auctions 2024

Germany’s Federal Network Agency (Bundesnetzagentur) continues to drive progress in offshore wind energy with a recent tender announcement. On 28 February 2024, the agency unveiled plans for offshore wind farms totalling 5,500 MW across three centrally pre-investigated sites in the North Sea. This comes after a tender announcement in January this year for non-centrally pre-investigated sites with a total capacity of 2,500 MW.

Pre-investigated sites totalling 5,500 MW

The designated sites, approximately 110 km northwest of Borkum, have already been investigated by the Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency which provides critical insight into marine environments, seabed conditions, and wind and oceanographic dynamics. Successful bidders are relieved of the burden of conducting these investigations themselves.

Contracts are awarded based on a predetermined point system, which – in addition to price – includes considerations for the proportion of renewable energy utilized in wind turbine manufacture, engagement in apprentice programs, eco-friendly foundation methods, and long-term electricity supply agreements. 90% of the successful bidder’s payments are allocated to a reduction of electricity costs.

Prospective bidders have until 1 August 2024 to submit their bids.

Non-centrally pre-investigated sites totalling 2,500 MW

On 29 January 2024, the German Federal Network Agency announced two tenders for non-centrally pre-investigated sites for new offshore wind farms with a total capacity of 2,500 MW. Bids can be submitted until 1 June 2024.

The sites, with capacities of 1,500 MW (site N-11.2) and 1,000 MW (site N-12.3) respectively, are situated in the North Sea, approximately 120 km northwest of the island of Heligoland. The offshore wind farms to be built on these sites are to be commissioned in 2031.

Since the sites have not been centrally pre-investigated, conducting all necessary site investigations (marine environment, seabed, wind and oceanographic conditions, etc.) will be the responsibility of the successful bidders.

Each tender will be awarded to the bidder with the lowest funding requirement for a wind farm on the respective site. If multiple bidders for a site opt not to request any funding and, thus, submit ‘zero cent‘ bids, the award will be determined following the so-called dynamic bidding procedure. Under this procedure, the award will be granted to the bidder willing to pay the highest amount.

2023 auction results and further information

In 2023, Germany‘s auction of four non-centrally pre-investigated sites with a total capacity of 7,000 MW saw dynamic bidding through successive bidding rounds, with bid levels increasing incrementally and eventually generating a total revenue of €12.6 billion. In relation to pre-investigated sites a revenue of €784 million was generated for a total capacity of 1,800 MW.

Further details in relation to these tenders are available at this link (in German):

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