RCG expands Benelux, German focus as renewables dominate low-carbon buildout

The Netherlands – 28th June 2022 – In anticipation of rapid growth, The Renewables Consulting Group (RCG), an ERM Group company, is expanding into the Northwestern European countries of Belgium, The Netherlands, Luxembourg and Germany as these respective governments continue to prioritise renewables.

The following targets and goals signify that Northwestern Europe will emerge as a significant leader in renewable energy throughout the decade:

  • Belgium, which agreed to phase out nuclear power by 2025, envisions offshore wind as the centrepiece of its plans;
  • The German government increased the offshore wind target to 30 GW by 2030; and
  • The Dutch cabinet recently approved doubling of the offshore wind target to 21 GW.

As a result, RCG is redoubling its efforts. Rob van der Hage, who was recently appointed to oversee the buildout of Benelux and Germany, leads business development and go-to-market strategies from an ERM office in Utrecht, The Netherlands.

“RCG is expanding its presence in Northwestern Europe as we see a significant increase by global market players to participate in offshore wind tenders and also increased M&A activity around renewable assets. With RCG’s deep local insights and knowledge in offshore wind combined with ERM’s legacy of sustainable solutions, we are uniquely suited to the energy transition.” – Rob van der Hage, Partner

Assisting van der Hage in the market’s buildout is Michiel Müller, a Consulting Director in ERM. Müller was formerly Program Director for the North Sea Wind Power Hub program at Dutch transmission system operator TenneT. Previously, he was Managing Director for Power Systems and Markets with Ecofys (currently Guidehouse). Müller’s broad market experience combined with a background in offshore wind development, energy system and market design, system integration and grid development projects will greatly benefit clients.

The recently concluded Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) lease auction for six areas totaling more than 488,000 acres in the New York Bight sent offshore wind lease prices into the stratosphere – setting records as a result.

The marathon auction – which lasted 64 rounds over nearly three full days – culminated on Feb. 25 with winning bids from six companies totaling approximately $4.37 billion. According to the  US Department of the Interior, the results of the New York Bight lease auction were the highest-grossing competitive offshore energy lease sale in history, including oil and gas lease sales. By itself, OCS-A 539 – which, at 125,964 acres, was the largest parcel being auctioned, generated a staggering bid of $1.1 billion from an entity known as Bight Wind Holdings LLC. The other provisional winners are as follows:

  • OCS-A 537 OW Ocean Winds East ($765 million)
  • OCS-A 538 Attentive Energy LLC ($795 million)
  • OCS-A 541 Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind Bight LLC ($780 million)
  • OCS-A 542 Invenergy Wind Offshore LLC ($645 million)
  • OCS-A 544 Mid-Atlantic Offshore Wind LLC ($285 million)

According to the DOI, the New York Bight offshore wind leases include stipulations designed to promote the development of a robust domestic US supply chain for offshore wind energy and enhance engagement with Tribes, the commercial fishing industry, other ocean users and underserved communities. The stipulations will also advance flexibility in transmission planning. Stipulations include incentives to source major components domestically – such as blades, turbines and foundations – and to enter into project labor agreements to ensure projects are union-built.

Shortly after the results were announced, Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland said, “The offshore wind sale makes one thing clear: the enthusiasm for the clean energy economy is undeniable and it’s here to stay. The investments we are seeing will play an important role in delivering on the Biden-Harris administration’s commitment to tackle the climate crisis and create thousands of good-paying, union jobs across the nation.”

According to BOEM, before the leases are finalized, the Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission will conduct an anti-competitiveness review of the auction, and the provisional winners will be required to pay the winning bids and provide financial assurance to BOEM.

As more US offshore wind leases are planned for this year, The Renewables Consulting Group can assist would-be bidders with market entry, mergers and acquisitions, analysis and other advisory scopes and services. To learn more, contact Doug Pfeister, managing director at (646) 431-8810.

Jesse Broehl is a Principal in RCG’s New York Office. He has over a decade of experience as a research analyst, consultant and wind energy subject matter expert journalist covering renewable energy. Mr. Broehl uniquely blends technical and industry knowledge on the US renewable energy market with years of writing and market report authorship experience.

Mr. Broehl is an experienced renewables analyst and has lead authorship on multiple technical and market intelligence reports. His experience includes over a decade focusing analyses on wind energy primarily, and solar and energy storage secondarily. As a skilled writer and industry analyst, Mr. Broehl is familiar with all aspects of the renewables market both domestically in the US and globally, and excels in market insights and strategy. He has served clients from across the industry, including wind turbine OEM companies, private equity companies, oil companies, and others.

Mr Broehl joins RCG from the leading US trade group for renewables, where he was a key member in renewable energy market, policy, and technology trend research and analyses. As a research analyst and consultant at an energy consultancy, Mr Broehl managed the firm’s global wind energy market analysis, competitive assessments, product and supply chain analysis, market forecasts and emerging technologies and strategies. In this role he was also the lead author on multiple annual reports and data products. Mr. Broehl has a degree in journalism and multiple lead authorship credits to his name.

Tim Baker is a Senior Associate in the Floating Offshore Wind team, which he joined in early 2022. He had seven years’ experience in the naval marine sector in the UK before pivoting to the energy transition challenge.

Mr Baker has held design, project management and commercial roles in capital platform and infrastructure projects for the UK MoD Customer. He is an expert in delivering quality engineering solutions in challenging and highly regulated project environments.

With a background in naval nuclear refitting, Mr Baker has led design and construction teams, directing development of both technical and commercial readiness and acting as the primary supply chain and customer interface. He has extensive experience in the areas of accurate requirements and change capture, configuration management and quality. In addition, he has a practical understanding of the importance of adherence to design codes and regulatory conditions, asset management and industrial safety. In providing mechanical handling technical authority and design management for cranes and refuelling infrastructure, he co-ordinated multidisciplinary engineering projects across the fleet, ensuring a consistent thread was maintained from fundamental design intent through to commissioning, operations and maintenance.

Tim Baker is a Chartered Engineer and Member of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers, and has qualifications in project management, industrial design and safety.  He is actively involved with IMechE voluntary work and holds a number of outdoor leadership credentials. He was selected as a RenewableUK Future Leader in 2021.

Tokyo, Japan – The Renewables Consulting Group, an ERM Group company, has appointed offshore wind energy specialist Yoshinori Okahara as a Director in the firm’s Tokyo office.

The appointment will help support the firm’s in-country efforts as the Japanese offshore wind market is currently a hotbed of activity with offshore wind auctions being launched and projects and alliances moving forward. For example, Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry recently announced four offshore wind promising areas – and up to 10 potential areas that require further study – as part of the country’s carbon neutrality plan. Japan aims to build 10 GW of installed capacity by 2030 and 30 GW to 45 GW by 2040.

Okahara will play a central role in supporting RCG’s growth in Japan and internationally as well as developing new revenue opportunities for RCG within Japan and the wider Asia Pacific region. He is also expected to provide leadership with the emerging requirement for owner’s engineering and other renewable project life cycle services.

He has more than 30 years’ experience in civil engineering construction sector with project management, construction management, design, schedule control, risk management, and trouble-shooting roles for both international and Japan domestic projects. Before RCG, Okahara served as acting general manager at Taisei Corporation, where he oversaw the company’s offshore wind program among other duties.

Commenting on the appointment, Gareth Lewis, managing director for the Asia Pacific (APAC) region, said:

“He is joining RCG at an opportune moment as Japan’s offshore developers will be preparing for auctions, securing consents and designing and procuring equipment. With Okahara-san’s extensive offshore experience in other sectors, he brings a wealth of relevant knowledge to the offshore wind sector.” Gareth Lewis – Managing Director, APAC

RCG’s continued growth means the firm can deploy experienced local teams on any renewable energy engagement, backed up by a team of international experts, to deliver high-value market intelligence, management consulting and technical advisory services on any renewable energy assignment in the Asia-Pacific region.

Tokyo, Japan – The Renewables Consulting Group, an ERM Group company, has appointed offshore wind energy specialist Yoshinori Okahara as a Director in the firm’s Tokyo office.

The appointment will help support the firm’s in-country efforts as the Japanese offshore wind market is currently a hotbed of activity with offshore wind auctions being launched and projects and alliances moving forward. For example, Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry recently announced four offshore wind promising areas – and up to 10 potential areas that require further study – as part of the country’s carbon neutrality plan. Japan aims to build 10 GW of installed capacity by 2030 and 30 GW to 45 GW by 2040.

Okahara will play a central role in supporting RCG’s growth in Japan and internationally as well as developing new revenue opportunities for RCG within Japan and the wider Asia Pacific region. He is also expected to provide leadership with the emerging requirement for owner’s engineering and other renewable project life cycle services.

He has more than 30 years’ experience in civil engineering construction sector with project management, construction management, design, schedule control, risk management, and trouble-shooting roles for both international and Japan domestic projects. Before RCG, Okahara served as acting general manager at Taisei Corporation, where he oversaw the company’s offshore wind program among other duties.

Commenting on the appointment, Gareth Lewis, managing director for the Asia Pacific (APAC) region, said:

“He is joining RCG at an opportune moment as Japan’s offshore developers will be preparing for auctions, securing consents and designing and procuring equipment. With Okahara-san’s extensive offshore experience in other sectors, he brings a wealth of relevant knowledge to the offshore wind sector.” Gareth Lewis – Managing Director, APAC

RCG’s continued growth means the firm can deploy experienced local teams on any renewable energy engagement, backed up by a team of international experts, to deliver high-value market intelligence, management consulting and technical advisory services on any renewable energy assignment in the Asia-Pacific region.