Danish Company Reveals Ambitious Offshore Wind Energy Proposals in Western Australia


A growing number of offshore wind project proposals are knocking on Australia’s door, but nothing has really come to fruition yet. One of the latest offshore wind projects from Copenhagen Energy revealed its grand ambitions for Western Australia with four 3GW proposals. Each project would cost the company around $8 billion to build. 

Copenhagen Energy’s four proposals were revealed one by one in recent months. The first is the Leeuwin, the second is the Midwest Offshore Wind Project on the coast near Kalbarri, and Samphire near Lancelin. The Vellela is the latest offshore wind project proposal the Danish company unveiled. 

Ambitious plans ahead

All of the project proposals seem to be similar to each other as all propose up to 200 turbines sized between 15MW and 25MW each. All of their locations have not been finalised yet, and all of them share exactly the same wording. 

The company likely believes that they have found the right formula that would lead to the success of their projects. Still these are in their early stages even thoughit aims to start the construction of the Leeuwin offshore wind farm in 2026. Copenhagen Energy believes that it will only take them two years to finish the construction of the Leeuwin. The company also plans to start the construction of Midwest in 2028 and Samphire in 2029. 

Copenhagen Energy really has ambitious plans, though they appear next to impossible considering that the federal government is focused on creating offshore wind energy zones in the eastern states first. Additionally, the process of environmental approvals, getting community support and connection deals, and completing a detailed feasibility study will surely take a lot of time. 

In fact, Australia’s offshore wind project, Star of the South, won’t likely kick off that early even though it has already completed significant studies on transmission links and has gone through extensive community engagement. 

The first offshore wind zone in Australia

Just last month, the federal government declared the waters off the Gippsland coast, located in Victoria’s south-east, would be the first offshore wind zone. Other areas will follow off the coast of Hunter Valley and Illawarra in NSW, Portland in Victoria, Northern Tasmania, Perth and Bunbury in WA. 

The declaration of the first offshore wind zone is the Australia’s move to catch up with other countries already generating energy from wind farms in the ocean. However, this will require all government levels to work together as this kind of development will need a high degree of policy support and forward planning. The supply chains are complex, and they would need to be developed in the country. Moreover, there are also higher construction costs that play a significant role in offshore wind zone development. 

The announcement also marked the beginning of the 60-day consultation with communities and users of waters in the nominated areas, which will be facilitated by the federal Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water. 

The transmission lines above ground will run from the wind zone to the energy grid in the Latrobe Valley. 


The important things you need to know about offshore wind farms in Australia

As a resident in Australia, it’s crucial you get yourself familiar with offshore wind farms and how they can impact your life. 

The offshore wind speed is faster than that on land, so there will be more energy generated. Additionally, offshore wind speeds are much more steady than wind farms onshore. As a result, they will be a more reliable source of energy. 

It is also known that coastal areas have high energy needs, and offshore wind farms in these areas can help meet those needs. 

However, building offshore wind farms take much more time than their onshore counterparts because they can be expensive and challenging to build and maintain. The wave action and high winds should be considered as well, specifically during heavy storms or hurricanes that could damage the wind turbines. It is also not fully understood how offshore wind farms affect marine animals and birds. 

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