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A wind farm off the Baltic coast. Photo: Axel Schmidt/Getty Images

The huge multinational oil-and-gas company Total plans to acquire a 51% stake in a very large offshore wind project slated for construction off the Scottish coast called Seagreen 1.

The state of play: The project 1.14-gigawatt project is slated to begin operation at the end of 2022 and will produce enough energy for roughly 1 million homes, Total said.

Why it matters: The French giant's deal with SSE Renewables, which includes an initial $88 million payment, is the latest sign of how European-headquartered oil-and-gas majors are increasingly investing outside their core business.

  • Per Bloomberg, it's Total's "first significant foray into offshore wind" as the company expands its overall green energy investments.

But, but, but: While the European majors are more active on climate and low-carbon energy than U.S.-based rivals Exxon and Chevron, the moves beyond fossil fuel still represent a very small part of their overall spending.

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Sep 11, 2020 - Energy & Environment

Voters and natural gas: It's complicated

Data: Brunswick Group; Chart: Naema Ahmed/Axios

Voters support natural gas production but also believe the industry must operate more cleanly, a new Brunswick Group poll shows.

Driving the news: The survey shows more support for gas than other fossil fuels, but it's much less popular than renewables.

10 hours ago - World

Maximum pressure campaign escalates with Fakhrizadeh killing

Photo: Fars News Agency via AP

The assassination of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, the architect of Iran’s military nuclear program, is a new height in the maximum pressure campaign led by the Trump administration and the Netanyahu government against Iran.

Why it matters: It exceeds the capture of the Iranian nuclear archives by the Mossad, and the sabotage in the advanced centrifuge facility in Natanz.

Scoop: Biden weighs retired General Lloyd Austin for Pentagon chief

Lloyd Austin testifying before Congress in 2015. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Joe Biden is considering retired four-star General Lloyd Austin as his nominee for defense secretary, adding him to a shortlist that includes Jeh Johnson, Tammy Duckworth and Michele Flournoy, two sources with direct knowledge of the decision-making tell Axios.

Why it matters: A nominee for Pentagon chief was noticeably absent when the president-elect rolled out his national security team Tuesday. Flournoy had been widely seen as the likely pick, but Axios is told other factors — race, experience, Biden's comfort level — have come into play.

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