Met in Hamburg. Left-right: Even Tronstad Sagebakken (Lindesnes), Rune Klausen (Fremtidens Havvind), Arne Eik (Equinor), Turid Storhaug (Global Ocean Technology), and Arne Thomassen (Agder County).

Having met with Agder representatives on numerous occasions Arne Eik, Project Director for Sørlige Nordsjø II at Equinor, is impressed by the region’s focus on offshore wind.

“The Agder region is forward-leaning. I often meet industry representatives and mayors from various municipalities in Agder. All they want to talk about is offshore wind and how Agder is perfectly positioned to play a major part in this industry development,” says Eik.

A month ago, Equinor and partners RWE and Hydro signed an MoU with Windport in Mandal. If the consortium wins a license to build a large-scale bottom-fixed offshore wind farm in the Sørlige Nordsjø II area in the North Sea, Windport, a wholly owned subsidiary of Global Ocean Technology, aims to provide port facilities for the development and construction phase of the wind farm.

“Long term, given that we are awarded an area of Sørlige Nordsjø II, it will be important for Equinor to have a physical presence in Agder. Short term, we will travel more often to Agder to meet the industry and the public players,” says Eik.

Equinor is already planning a two-day meeting in Agder at the end of October.

“We would also like to meet with the business associations in Agder. From other projects in other regions, we know how important and effective they are,” says Eik.

Wednesday, at WindEnergy in Hamburg, Eik again met with county mayor Arne Thomassen and Lindesnes mayor Even Tronstad Sagebakken. Attending the meeting was also Turid Storhaug (CTO at Global Ocean Technology), Rune Klausen (Project Manager at Fremtidens Havvind), Arne Wilhelmsen (Lindesnes), Kjell Rune Olsen (Lindesnes), and Trond Backer (CEO of Kristiansand Chamber of Commerce).

“Having an opportunity to meet with Equinor and other offshore wind operators, in addition to politicians and world-wide industry leaders, all in one place, is certainly useful and efficient. Our visit to WindEnergy Hamburg has been highly educational,” says Even Tronstad Sagebakken.

As Mayor of Lindesnes, Sagebakken also attended the wind energy conference in Bilbao in April.

“Offshore wind has gained momentum, both in Lindesnes and the entire Agder region. In less than six months, we have come together to build a position as the Norwegian premier region for offshore wind,” says Sagebakken – and adds:

“Our strength lies in our united front and our multiple available locations between Farsund and Kristiansand for offshore wind developers and their supplier industry. If we succeed, there will be plenty of work for everybody.

In a showing of unity between regions and the public and private sector, Agder travelled to Hamburg with a mission: To increase its chances to play a big part when Norwegian waters open for offshore wind development.

“We have made an impression. No doubt. Agder is by far the best represented region of Norway at Europe’s largest wind exhibition. Hundreds and hundreds of people in the business and political sectors now put their minds and efforts into this industry. It will result in more jobs and value creation in this southern part of Norway,” says Tom Fidjeland, CEO of GCE NODE.

Lindesnes mayor Even Tronstad Sagebakken (left) in dialogue with Rune Klausen (Project Manager at Fremtidens Havvind), and Arne Eik (Project Director Sørlige Nordsjø II at Equinor).