North Sea nations sign monumental wind energy deal

Capacity to be increased tenfold by 2030

The EU Commission has signed a new historic agreement with the North Sea nations to use the area to generate wind energy that can benefit the whole of Europe.

The EU estimates the wind turbine capacity of the North Sea can be increased tenfold by 2030, and the energy and climate minister, Lars Christian Lilleholt, has agreed to sign on to that vision today on Denmark’s behalf.

“With the co-operation, the North Sea nations can harmonise the rules and co-ordinate offshore wind tenders in order to make the North Sea a power plant for the whole of Europe,” said Lilleholt.

“If the North Sea becomes the Silicon Valley of offshore wind energy, it can become a really good business for Denmark and the environment. There is great potential in developing joint projects in order to utilise the best spots in the North Sea.”

READ MORE: Wind energy in Denmark breaking world records

Streamlining the EU 
Aside from Denmark, the other nations included in the deal are Belgium, the Netherlands, Ireland, the UK, France, Luxembourg, Norway, Sweden and Germany.

Currently, the rules for sea windfarms vary from country to country in the EU – whether it is the colour of the turbines or the design – which means that the Danish wind turbine sector is forced to adhere to the legislation of over six markets in the North Sea area.

That increases the price of the wind turbines and the cost that the consumer pays for sustainable energy. The new co-operation aims to do away with these complications.

The EU Commission evaluates that wind from the North Sea could cover 4-12 percent of EU’s energy consumption by 2030, and Denmark’s North Sea area is particularly attractive because of its relatively low sea depth.

The work is scheduled to start sometime this month and will be headed by Denmark, the Netherlands and Belgium over the first three years.