They are calling it Nao Victoria, after the ship that Magallanes-Elcano used for the first circumnavigation of the globe in the 16th century, and they want it to be an energy revolution in Malaga. An international group has asked the Spanish government for permission to build a huge wind farm with floating generators off the Costa del Sol. It would be the size of 30,000 football pitches (bigger than the Canary island of El Hierro) and would be between 25 and 40 kilometres offshore.
When operating at full capacity, the wind farm would be able to supply electricity for around 660,000 households, which is more than all those in the province of Malaga (the latest statistics show 649,000).
The group behind the initiative is IberBlue Wind, a consortium formed by the Irish company Simply Blue Group, which specialises in marine wind energy, and Spanish firms Proes Consultores (an engineering division of Grupo Amper) and FF New Energy Ventures (FF NEV). The company has already sent the initial project to the Ministry for Ecological Transition.
If the government approves the project, the offshore wind generators will be installed in the Alborán Sea off the stretch of coast between Fuengirola and Marbella, at a cost of over 2.5 billion euros. The nearest one to the Costa del Sol will be about 25 kilometres away so the visual impact will be minimal, the group says.
Each generator will be 200 metres tall and supported by a triangular floating platform 80 metres each side, attached but not cemented to the sea bed, which in this location is between 300 and 500 metres deep. The group says the construction of the wind farm will create thousands of jobs.
Nothing is definite yet: in fact, the government currently has a moratorium on the use of maritime land although new concessions many be granted next year, so there are still a lot of questions about this initiative. However, IberBlue Wind is hoping that the largest offshore wind farm in Malaga province will be in operation by 2030.