France to double renewables capacity under 10-year energy plan

Source: By Geert De Clercq, Reuters • Posted: Sunday, January 27, 2019

PARIS (Reuters) – France plans to double its renewable energy capacity with a system of regular tenders under a draft 10-year energy strategy plan published on Friday.

The so-called PPE plan, which lays out capacity targets for various energy sectors over the 2019-2023 and 2024-28 periods, also confirmed that four to six nuclear reactors – including two in Fessenheim – will be closed by 2028, as announced late last year.

France aims to boost electrical renewable energy capacity – including hydropower – from 48.6 gigawatt (GW) end 2017 to 74 GW in 2023 and 113 GW in 2028, mainly by boosting wind and solar.

Through regular tenders, onshore wind installed capacity will be more than doubled from 13.5 GW at the end of 2017 to about 25 GW in 2023 and about 35 GW in 2028. Offshore wind capacity will rise from zero today to 2.4 GW in 2023 and about 5 GW in 2028, while solar capacity is set to grow from 7.7 GW at the end of 2017 to 21 GW in 2023 and about 40 GW in 2028.

Hydro capacity will increase marginally from 25.3 GW end 2017 to about 26.6 in 2028.

In fixed-foundation offshore wind, the government plans tenders for 500 megawatt (MW) this year at a price of less than 70 euros per megawatt hour, 1,000 MW in 2020 at 65 MWh and 1,000 to 1,500 MW at 60 MWh in 2023-24.

It also wants to kick of floating offshore wind with a first tender for 250 MW at 120 euros per MWh in 2021, followed by 250 MW in 2022 and 250 to 500 MW in 2024. From 2025 onwards, it plans one 500 MW project per year, either fixed or floating.

Reporting by Geert De Clercq