Vattenfall forecasts building subsidy-free offshore wind by 2025

State-owned Swedish utility Vattenfall says it will be producing subsidy-free offshore wind plants within a decade. Michael Simmelsgaard of Vattenfall

Michael Simmelsgaard, head of Vattenfall's strategic projects in wind, told a conference, "We should be able to build onshore wind power projects by 2020 without subsidy, and we also expect that we could build offshore wind power without subsidy by 2025, but that would depend on the projects."

The state-owned utility plans to boost its wind power portfolio in Europe to 4 GW, equivalent to four nuclear reactors, by 2020 from the current installed 1.8 GW, and further to 7 GW by 2025, according to Reuters.

Wind power is expected to generate $1.1bn in Vattenfall's core profit by 2020, Simmelsgaard said.

Last year, Vattenfall won a tender to build the 400-megawatt Horns Rev 3 wind park off Denmark, which is expected to produce the world's cheapest offshore wind energy at an agreed price of 0.77 Danish crown ($0.11) per kilowatt-hour.

Offshore wind is one of the most expensive renewable energy technologies in Britain, because manufacturing and maintaining turbines strong enough to withstand marine environments is costly. The sector still relies heavily on government subsidies.

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