Climate Change Adaptation
Climate change is an unequivocal fact of our present day, threatening natural and human infrastructure, particularly in offshore and coastal areas. Companies across the globe face a responsibility to transition operations towards sustainability, and there is no more important industry to lead the way in tackling this challenge than the energy sector.
INNOSEA, as part of the ABL Group, is investing heavily in climate change adaptation and resilience, helping clients to de-risk their work across energy and oceans.
We have the relevant experience and capabilities to play a role in identifying what risks climate change poses to renewable energy generation, and the related risk management to achieve the necessary climate resilience in our infrastructure for future generations.
Several world regions are aiming to reach carbon emission neutrality in their offshore wind industries by 2050, and increased knowledge and awareness of the challenges will be imperative, especially with the effectiveness of renewable mediums being so vulnerable to weather and climate.
On the other hand, insurers and banks are now more and more aware of the climate change issues and often ask clients to provide climate change risk assessments, particularly at the financing stage of their projects.
Enhancing the awareness of developers in the energy and maritime industries, to understand the physical risks and hazards – and the modifications to expect – will be key in driving change. This includes:
- Identifying threats and opportunities
- Understanding the scientific fundamentals of climate change and the predicted impacts
- Guidance and understanding of the issues facing the implementation of renewable assets to enable this transition
- Qualitative studies
This service is particularly incorporated in asset integrity management, Marine Warranty Survey, Technical Due Diligence, site identification, port design and owner’s engineering activities.
Climate Change Risk Assessments (CCRAs)
CCRAs are advanced studies to understand the impact of climate change stimuli on specific projects. This study is particularly relevant at development stage or for equity and insurance investigations.
INNOSEA performs CCRAs for clients’ wind farms following a 3-step approach:
- Identification of changes in design environmental conditions due to climate change that can be expected at the wind farm site, based on literature review.
- Identification of the consequences that these stimuli may have on the wind farm. This is based on literature review regarding the impacts of climate change on wind energy systems and offshore assets, technical expertise, and review of Project documentation.
- Risk scoring for the Project assets (Wind Turbine Generators, Foundations, Cables, Onshore assets) considering their specificities, based on the likelihood of occurrence and the severity of consequences. When it is relevant, mitigation measures are suggested to the client.
The study is performed in accordance with The Equator Principles; requiring the consideration of physical risks induced by climate change as defined by the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosure. The overall approach is qualitative.
Figure 1 Typical output for the tailored assessment service
Climate Change Adaptation Lead
Tailored Assessment Reports
INNOSEA, and the wider ABL Group, have developed an in-house software tool for assessing the reliability of future climate projections to perform site-specific impact studies of climate change. These studies are effective in determining environmental impacts on wind farm power generation capacities, for example.
The tool relies on climate expert expertise and methods, utilising state-of-the-art climate models and methodologies from the scientific climate research community – such as Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and Coupled Model Intercomparison Programme (CMIP).
INNOSEA provides site-specific climate change risks and opportunities quantitative studies, via the in-house software tool. These studies offer an objective assessment of climate change threats for clients’ selected sites.
The report comprises the reliability of the climate projections for the locations under study, looking at the uncertainties, and applying and assessing climate projections produced by the scientific community (CORDEX) for specific offshore locations.
This analysis of the future climate projections covers:
- Evolution of the climate stimuli (wind, temperature, sea level rise, acidity, waves, etc)
- The risks and opportunities for your marine renewable energy project
- Trends of evolution and relative magnitude
- Mitigation strategies to improve the resiliency of the projects (design consideration, operational and maintenance strategy, etc)
Following this quantitative study stage, INNOSEA provides design revisions on documents for wind farms reviewed, identifying the climate change risks on assets relevant to the client scope: eg. WTG, foundations, IACs.
Survey requested by the major stakeholders of the industry
In 2021, INNOSEA conducted a survey of key stakeholders in the offshore wind industry to understand the industry’s expectations and worries in regard to climate change.
The 60 responses received (primarily from wind farm developers) showed that the developer’s main preoccupation is to ensure that “the wind farm produces the expected amount of energy despite the changing climate”.
View the survey here.
“Windfarms Lifetime Extension” recommendations to an investor, 2022
- Provided an equity investor client with guidance and recommendations on the feasibility of an offshore wind farm lifetime extension project.
- The report included consideration of potential extreme weather events in extended lifetime scenarios, given the expected increased frequency of climate change-driven extreme weather events.
Recommendations for Ports design
INNOSEA took part in the European Interreg PORTOS project to develop and promote the use of renewable energy – particularly marine – in European ports, to enhance their self-sufficiency.
Our experts provided expertise for the resiliency and good adaptation of port infrastructures to face climate change issues and guarantee the role of the implemented energy systems. Roadmaps towards energy self-sufficiency have been made for 5 case-study ports, taking into account the future effects of climate change in various European locations (Ireland, Spain, Portugal, Azores and Canary Islands archipelagos).
Visit PORTOS project website here.
Climate risk assessment of 2 major offshore wind farms in North European seas and 1 major Taiwanese offshore wind farm
- Identification of changes in environmental conditions due to climate change stimuli that can be expected on-site, based on a literature review.
- Identification of the consequences that these stimuli may have on the wind farm (offshore and onshore assets).
- Review of the risks already identified during the Technical Due Diligence previously performed and that may be aggravated by climate change;
- Review of the design documents to identify climate stimuli thresholds (WTG performance, assets integrity, …);
- Literature review regarding impacts of climate change on wind energy systems and offshore assets.
- Risk scoring for the project assets based on the likelihood of occurrence, and the severity of consequences.
- The potential technical and financial impacts of long-term climate change on the project
- Categorisation of risk and matrix score
- Review of the permitting, consenting & environmental
- Financial model inputs
Figure 2 Scoring used in our method for the Climate Change Risk Assessment service