Danish port to invest €980 million in green expansion
By Leila Steed11 July 2023
Authorities at the Port of Esbjerg in Denmark - said to be the largest port for offshore wind activities in the world - have secured a financing deal that could see up to DKK7 billion (€940 million) spent on expanding and improving the port’s infrastructure to support the country’s green transition.
The port and the country’s leading pension fund company, PensionDanmark, recently signed the cooperation agreement. It aims to speed up the installation of facilities that can accommodate companies in the growing wind energy sector, in preparation for “the big wind boom” in the North Sea.
Dennis Jul Pedersen, Managing Director at Port of Esbjerg, said, “Much more pace is needed for the green transition, and this requires enormous capacity. With the prospect of a billion kroner investment from PensionDanmark, we can look forward to being as ready as possible, as quickly as possible.”
According to authorities at the Port of Esbjerg, more wind farms in the North Sea must be established in order to meet Denmark’s targets of generating 134 gigawatts of energy by 2030, and 300 gigawatts by 2050.
PensionDanmark’s investment in the port will be structured in three phases. The first phase will see around DKK5.8 billion (€780 million) of the funds spent on building new facilities for the production of offshore wind turbines.
Alongside the turbine facilities, which are currently scheduled to be operational in 2027, roughly DKK 700 million (€94 million) has been allocated for the establishment of carbon capture and storage (CCS) terminals and energy conversion terminals that can convert renewable electricity into other forms, such as heat, methane, hydrogen or synthetic fuels.
Dennis Jul Pedersen, said, “Together with the port’s companies, we will continue to be at the forefront of the wind industry, and an investment from PensionDanmark will be able to support both that role - and the role we would like to play in the development of green energy and CCS.
A further DKK500 million (€67 million) is expected to be invested in updating the port’s transport infrastructure. This will see its road and sea transport networks improved and the interconnection of rail and air freight transport from Esbjerg Airport and Esbjerg Harbour. These measures are expected to be operational in 2032.
Speaking of its collaboration with the port and the upcoming expansion plans, PensionDanmark CEO Torben Möger Pedersen, said, “We are ready to invest if the projects can be combined with a suitable return for our members’ pension savings, and with the planned projects there is an opportunity to invest timely and massive.
“In this way, we can give Esbjerg and Denmark the opportunity to build up an international leading position, which contains considerable export potential, as we have already seen in the wind energy area.”