The world’s leading offshore wind provider has warned that its profits for 2021 have been buffeted by low wind speeds
The UK’s coastline is normally a prime location for wind speeds, particularly in the North Sea where Orsted has most of its wind turbines. However, in April, May and June wind speeds were the worst recorded during the quarter for 22 years.
Mads Nipper, the Danish company’s chief executive, told the Financial Times that wind speeds in the North Sea had been “extraordinarily poor”, adding: “It’s very serious. It is like you’re a farmer and it doesn’t rain.”
Orsted said quarterly wind speeds were 7.8 metres per second (m/s) on average across its offshore farms. This was lower than the 8.4 m/s seen in the second quarter last year and the predicted level of 8.6 m/s.
Orsted, which made Kr.52.6bn in 2020 (£6.02bn), said that low wind speeds had cost the company Kr.1.4bn up to the end of July. The company expects annual profits to be towards the lower end of its forecasted range of Kr.15bn to Kr.16bn.
Orsted is not the only energy company whose finances have been left deflated by the lack of windy conditions.
RWE, a German energy provider, also blamed adverse conditions in northern and central Europe for a 21 per cent fall in adjusted earnings of its wind farms in the first six months of the year.
Orsted’s share price is down -26.39 per cent this year to date, but has climbed by 3.22 per cent over the past 24 hours.