Scottish offshore wind developer Red Rock Power has teamed up with Italian energy giant Eni to submit a joint bid in the ScotWind leasing round.
Supported by transmission company Transmission Investment, the 50/50 partnership will also consider future renewable opportunities in Scotland, with a particular focus on prioritising opportunities for local supply chain.
ScotWind, the first offshore leasing round in Scottish waters for a decade, will close to applicants on Friday.
The process is expected to unlock billions of pounds in investment, helping Scotland on its way to becoming a net zero country by 2045.
Eni has set a target of delivering 60 gigawatts (GW) of renewables capacity by 2050.
It made its first step in the offshore wind sector by acquiring a 20% stake in the huge Dogger Bank project in December.
The Rome-headquartered company also owns and operates a number of solar and onshore wind projects inside and outside Europe.
Eni, Strathclyde University and Eni Corporate University recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to develop and deliver a programme to help Scottish oil and gas workers to transfer their skills to renewables.
Guy Madgwick, chief executive of Red Rock Power, said: “Securing a partner to enable us to capitalise on our existing offshore wind development expertise and levelling-up our offshore construction experience ahead of the ScotWind bid was a key priority for us this year.
“Eni brings a wealth of offshore expertise from the oil and gas sector that offers significant value in potential projects moving forward. Our priority right now is formulating a competitive proposition which would allow us to expand while maximising opportunities for Scotland’s wind sector and supply chain.
“We recognise the vast potential in collaborating with an energy company like Eni to deliver net zero targets in the North Sea and see this as an opportunity to further champion the transition of its skilled workforce into renewables. I come from an oil and gas background, as do many of our team, and we recognise that there are significant learnings and transferable skills the wind industry can benefit from.”
Alessandro Della Zoppa, head of renewables in Eni Gas & Luce, said: “We are glad to enter into a partnership with Red Rock Power for the ScotWind bid. Red Rock Power’s team brings significant experience in this sector and specifically in Scotland.
“We are confident that this collaboration will support Eni’s ambition to achieve its renewables targets, as well as contributing to the development of Scotland’s role in the decarbonisation of the North Sea.
“The success of ScotWind will be crucial for developing the local industry in this sector and for positioning new technologies in a growing global market.
“Eni is committed to a Just Transition underlining a constant commitment to enhancing people’s value while seizing the opportunities offered by possible developments in the energy market, this is our driver as we continue our transformation journey.”