During CERAWeek, Petrobras and Equinor have signed a letter of intent that expands the cooperation between the two companies to assess the technical, economic, and environmental feasibility of seven offshore wind power generation projects off the Brazilian coast with the potential to generate up to 14.5 GW.
With these studies, the expectation is to advance in the country's energy transition projects.
Sheringham Shoal offshore wind farm (Photo: Andrew Saunders / Equinor)
'Equinor and Petrobras have a long history of successful partnership. We are happy to expand our collaboration to renewables, enabling a broad energy offering in Brazil. Together we are actively engaging to contribute to the realization of offshore wind and Brazil’s energy transition, by creating the necessary initial conditions for renewables energy to develop in a sustainable way,' says Anders Opedal, CEO in Equinor.
'This agreement will pave the way for a new frontier of clean and renewable energy in Brazil, taking advantage of our country's significant offshore wind potential and boosting our trajectory towards the energy transition. We will combine our world-renowned offshore technological innovation capacity and our experience in the Brazilian electricity generation market with Equinor's expertise in offshore wind projects in several countries. It is worth mentioning, however, that the phase is for studies and the allocation of investments depends on in-depth analyzes to assess their viability, in addition to regulatory advances that will allow the authorization processes for the activities, to be carried out by the Union', said Petrobras president and CEO Jean Paul Prates.
The agreement is the result of the partnership signed between Petrobras and Equinor in 2018 – and had its scope expanded beyond the two wind farm opportunities - Aracatu I and II (located on the coastal border between the states of Rio de Janeiro and Espírito Santo), initially planned.
In addition to these two projects, the new agreement provides for an assessment of the viability of wind farms Mangara (on the coast of Piauí); Ibitucatu (coast of Ceará); Colibri (on the coastal border between Rio Grande do Norte and Ceará); besides Atobá and Ibituassu (both on the coast of Rio Grande do Sul) – in a total of seven projects, effective until 2028.
Equinor has conducted business in Brazil since 2001, and the country is considered one of the core areas for Equinor. Equinor has a solid and diversified oil & gas portfolio in Brazil, with licenses both under development and in production such as Bacalhau, in Santos basin, and Peregrino, in Campos basin.
Within renewables, Equinor is owner in the Apodi Solar plant (162 MW) operated by Scatec. The plant started production in 2018. In 2022, construction work started in the Mendubim solar project (531 MW) realized in partnership with Scatec and Hydro Rein and planned to come in production in 2024.
Petrobras' profitable portfolio diversification initiative will contribute to the success of the energy transition and is added to the plan to reduce operational emissions of greenhouse gases.
The company reiterates its goal of achieving short-term targets and its ambition to neutralize emissions in activities under its control by 2050 – as well as influencing partners in non-operated assets. In Petrobras' Strategic Plan for the period from 2023 to 2027, offshore wind is one of the priority segments for in-depth studies.
The Brazilian potential for offshore wind power generation brings promising opportunities for diversifying the country's energy matrix. Offshore wind generation technology uses the strength of winds at sea to produce renewable energy.