ABP, the Dutch civil service scheme, has won a tender from the Dutch government to build the country’s biggest wind farm, together with Scottish renewable energy developer SSE Renewables.

ABP and SSE Renewables have won a tender from the government to build a 2GW wind farm on the North Sea, that is intended to cover 8% of the Netherlands’ electricity consumption. The project, named Noordzeker, will be situated 62 km off the Dutch port of IJmuiden.

ABP first announced its bid in November 2022, and found a partner in SSE Renewables a few months later. The bid was part of ABP’s ambition to invest €30bn in the energy transition by 2030. In 2021, the civil service scheme decided to divest from fossil fuels.

ABP and SSE will pay the Dutch government €1m annually over a 40-year period. During the construction and operation of the wind farm, they will work together with Naturalis Biodiversity Centre, which has expertise in how to protect biodiversity. Naturalis will monitor how the wind farm can contribute to biodiversity in the North Sea, for example by building artificial reefs, switching off turbines when there are many birds around, and removing waste from the sea with autonomous boats.

“With Noordzeker, we have the ambition to exploit a large wind farm in the North Sea. Together with Naturalis we want to put the ecological bar higher for the development, construction and management of wind farms,” said Harmen van Wijnen, president of ABP.

Danish investor Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP) and Swedish energy firm Vattenfall won a second tender for the second part of the IJmuiden Ver project. This wind farm, which will also have a capacity of 2GW, will include a 50MW floating offshore solar farm on site and a new electrolyser at the Port of Rotterdam which will convert electricity generated by the project to green hydrogen. The pair will pay an annual fee of €20m to exploit the wind farm.

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