Australia’s offshore wind energy industry is progressing at pace, and a new partnership between the University of Melbourne and Ørsted, the world’s largest offshore wind developer, is set to fast-track it into the future.
The partnership will combine Ørsted’s global experience in offshore wind energy of more than 30 years with cutting-edge Australian research.
The University of Melbourne has signed a memorandum of understanding with Ørsted to develop offshore wind energy projects with wind farms in Europe, North America and the Asia-Pacific region.
The memorandum of understanding will combine Ørsted’s operational experience with the university’s knowledge of marine environments, biodiversity and Indigenous Sea Country to design and deliver the best offshore wind outcomes in Australia.
In addition to fostering academic and research cooperation in the offshore wind sector, the partnership will focus on enhancing the preparedness of students and researchers for careers in the renewable energy sector.
“This memorandum of understanding with Ørsted allows us to play a pivotal role in unlocking the potential of offshore wind energy, with long-term benefits for local communities, the economy and the environment,” says the University of Melbourne’s Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology Dean, Professor Mark Cassidy.
Ørsted Australia director Henriette Holm says the partnership will leverage the strengths of both organisations, which are committed to Australia’s offshore wind and renewable energy future.
“Ørsted is delighted to join forces with the University of Melbourne to help Australia fast-track and benefit from its enormous offshore wind potential,” she says.
“With the sharing of expert local and global knowledge, the memorandum of understanding will help accelerate collaboration around offshore wind opportunities to deliver the best outcomes for Australian communities, workforces, educators, businesses and the environment.
“Ørsted is a strong believer in long-term academic partnerships, which have helped it achieve unrivalled success in constructing 33 offshore wind farms across Europe, the US and Asia-Pacific.”
The initial phase of Ørsted’s proposed project off the coast of Victoria’s Gippsland region will create up to 6000 jobs, with the University of Melbourne aiming to develop a dedicated workforce.