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What is Global Offshore Wind Alliance?

What is wind energy and how does it work?

The Global Offshore Wind Alliance has been initiated by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), Denmark, and the Global Wind Energy Council in September 2022.

The alliance will bring together governments, the private sector, international organizations, and other stakeholders to accelerate the deployment of offshore wind power.

Countries in GOWA have agreed to work together to advance national, regional, and global ambitions and remove barriers to the deployment of offshore wind in new and existing markets.

Offshore wind can be deployed on a large scale, in a short time frame, and at a competitive cost – a fast and viable way to bridge the growing gap between renewable energy targets and current rates of implementation.

Offshore Wind Turbines
Offshore Wind Turbines

Benefits of Offshore Wind Energy

  • It means creating wind farms inside the water bodies. These wind farms utilize the sea winds to generate electricity.
  • These wind farms either use fixed-foundation turbines or floating wind turbines.
  • Offshore wind farms must be at least 200 nautical miles from the shore and 50 feet deep in the ocean
  • In places where land is limited and the population is increasing, large wind farms positioned over water bodies will be vital. Countries like India can be benefited from these farms.
  • Offshore wind turbines are considered more efficient compared to onshore turbines. 
  • In offshore water bodies, wind speed is high & is consistent in direction. It means they can generate more electricity with less number of turbines as compared to offshore turbines.
  • Such units are nearer to the city so transmission cost is also low.
  • They do not emit any environmental pollutants or greenhouse gas during operation. So they are environment friendly.
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Offshore wind Energy in India

  • India is blessed with a coastline of about 7600 km surrounded by water on three sides and has good prospects of harnessing offshore wind energy. 
  • Considering this, the Government had notified the “Nationaloffshore wind energy policy”as per the Gazette Notification dated 6th October 2015. 
  • India set a target of 5.0 GW of offshore wind installations by 2022 and 30 GW by 2030.
  • The first offshore wind energy project of 1.0 GW capacity was planned in the identified zone-B off the coast of Gujarat.

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Offshore wind capacity to exceed 2000GW in 2050

Both the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and the International Energy Agency (IEA) expect offshore wind capacity to exceed 2000GW in 2050 to limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C and achieve net zero would be needed, which is only a little over 60GW today.

To reach this goal, GOWA will aim to contribute to accelerating growth to reach a total installed capacity of at least 380GW by the end of 2030.

Nine new countries joined Global Offshore Wind Alliance

Nine new countries including Belgium, Colombia, Germany, Ireland, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, the UK, US join Global Offshore Wind Alliance (GOWA) at COP27 to tackle the climate and energy security crisis by promoting offshore wind power.

Ben Backwell, CEO of the Global Wind Energy Council, said, “There is a large and growing gap between what is needed to reach our climate goals and what is actually happening in terms of implementation. The wind is the most practical, available technology available to many countries, but the situation is not hopeless. GWEC estimates that the current announced government target for offshore wind will take installed capacity to 370GW – which is close to the 380GW target – by the end of 2030. But if we are going to turn these goals into reality, we have to do our best and work together.”

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  • Pallav Jain is co-founder of Ground Report and an independent journalist and visual storyteller based in Madhya Pradesh. He did his PG Diploma in Radio and TV journalism from IIMC 2015-16.

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