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Offshore wind farm project at VOC to cost ₹450cr, to produce 500MW in phase-1

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THOOTHUKUDI : Union Shipping Ministry planning to develop an offshore wind terminal at VOC Port here, the estimated project cost has been pegged at ₹450 crore, according to official sources. Moreover,TNIE that VOC Port is planning to build infrastructure to produce 500MW from offshore wind under the first phase.

According to the India Offshore Wind Ports Study conducted by Centre of Excellence for Offshore Wind and Renewable Energy, the total cost involved in building the new terminal was initially estimated to be 965 crore. This includes dredging and shore protection among other works. But VOC Port authorities said a cost analysis carried out by the port found that the cost involved is around ₹450 crore.

A VOC port official said that the tender to develop the offshore wind farm would be floated in July or August after the elections. To a query on developing offshore wind clusters, which would generate jobs and investment, the official said that it is the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy which is working on the project.

Although the port is already working with shipping of components for on-shore wind turbines, catering to offshore wind is not a part of the current masterplan, but a top shipping ministry official said that necessary action is being taken in this regard.

According to the study conducted by the Centre of Excellence for Offshore Wind and Renewable Energy, VOC Port was found to make a very ideal location for establishment of an offshore wind terminal owing to its relatively close proximity to the Tamil Nadu offshore wind zone

“Port infrastructure plays a critical role in supporting the offshore wind industry and the Government of India should play a role so that works are completed in a timely manner. Indian Port Authorities and port operators can take a page from European ports that already have a vision and a brand as offshore wind ports,” the study said.

“Providing an opportunity for exchange of best practices, know-how and to jointly discuss opportunities and challenges that ports face would be helpful for Indian ports. For example, a twinning partnership between Indian Ports and the Port of Esbjerg could be a first step,” it added.

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