ESB and Ørsted to transform Irish offshore wind landscape


Ireland – ESB, Ireland’s leading utility, and Ørsted, the global offshore wind leader, have joined forces in a groundbreaking agreement to develop a significant offshore wind portfolio off the Irish coast.

The partnership aims to deliver up to five gigawatts (GW) of renewable energy and promote renewable hydrogen projects, supporting Ireland’s transition to a net-zero economy. This collaboration marks a major step toward decarbonizing the Irish electricity system and positioning Ireland as a key player in the offshore wind industry.

The partnership between ESB and Ørsted establishes a 50/50 joint venture to advance a pipeline of offshore wind projects. With the potential to generate five gigawatts of renewable energy, these projects will contribute significantly to Ireland’s renewable energy goals. The first projects resulting from this collaboration are expected to participate in the upcoming Irish offshore wind auction, ORESS 2.1. This agreement signifies the most ambitious partnership in Ireland’s offshore wind sector to date.

Offshore wind potential

Ireland’s extensive maritime area, more than ten times the size of its landmass, presents a unique opportunity for the growth of the offshore wind sector. Harnessing this potential will enable Ireland to decarbonize its electricity system while fostering the export of renewable energy to Europe. The partnership between ESB and Ørsted aligns with the Irish Government’s vision of installing 7 GW of offshore wind capacity by 2030 and supporting Ireland’s commitment to achieving net-zero emissions.

Renewable Hydrogen and Ireland’s Energy Transition:
Beyond renewable energy generation, the partnership also explores the production of renewable hydrogen from the offshore wind projects. Renewable hydrogen holds promise as a clean energy source and can play a crucial role in decarbonizing various sectors, including transportation and industry. This long-term focus on renewable hydrogen supports the Irish Government’s ambition to create a sustainable and resilient energy system while advancing the country’s transition to net-zero emissions.

Government support

Minister for Enterprise, Trade & Employment, Simon Coveney TD, expressed enthusiasm for the partnership, emphasizing the government’s commitment to developing a robust offshore wind sector. The collaboration between ESB and Ørsted reinforces Ireland’s sustainable future and signifies an essential milestone in building an indigenous, secure, affordable, and clean energy system. The National Industrial Strategy for Offshore Wind further underpins the government’s dedication to fostering offshore wind development.

ESB’s Executive Director, Jim Dollard, highlighted the company’s expertise in offshore wind and its extensive portfolio of projects in Ireland and Great Britain. The partnership with Ørsted aligns with ESB’s strategy of achieving net-zero emissions by 2040 and plays a pivotal role in their commitment to making a positive difference. Ørsted, known for its global leadership in offshore wind, brings its wealth of experience and expertise to the Irish market, leveraging their successful track record in commercializing offshore wind projects worldwide.