South Korea moves forward with World’s largest offshore wind farm plan

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The government of South Korea has announced their plans to fast-track their plan to construct the world’s largest offshore wind farm by pledging their support for the US$43 billion plan. The “Green New Deal”, President Moon Jae-In’s plan for reducing the nation’s carbon emissions, his administration is backing a proposed 8.2 GW wind farm off the coast of Sinan, a small archipelago just west of Mokpo. Once construction is completed, it would be the largest single offshore wind project in the world, and it would double the nation’s existing wind power capacity. The objective behind the project is to jump-start South Korea’s renewable energy industry and make the country a leader in offshore wind power by 2030.

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The President’s administration estimates that its construction and operation would create 120,000 jobs, along with new opportunities at manufacturing centers in Mokpo, Yeongam, and Sinan. In line with Moon’s goals for economic development, the megaproject will have an all-domestic lineup. The partners include utilities Kepco and SK, turbine and powerplant builder Doosan Heavy Industries, whose most powerful offshore turbine is a 5.5 MW model and is working on an eight MW design. Infrastructure construction company Hanwha and wind farm developer CS Wind are also partners who will be involved.

“The government will provide every necessary support under the goal of making [South Korea] one of the world’s top five offshore wind powerhouses by 2030,” Moon said at a signing ceremony Friday. “We will shorten the project preparation period, which takes more than five years to start construction, and enact special laws to provide comprehensive support from location discovery to licensing.” In a “win-win” development model, Moon said, local residents will have employment opportunities from the project, along with a share of the profits in the form of a lifelong “offshore wind power pension.”