These Four European Countries Have Set a 150 GW Offshore Wind Target

Highlights :

Signing €135 Billion Offshore Wind Pact, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands and Denmark plan to become Green Power Plant of Europe.

Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands and Denmark signed an agreement in Esbjerg on 18 May to produce offshore wind energy and green hydrogen equivalent to 65 GW by 2030 and 150 GW by 2050.

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Declaring their intention of becoming the Green Power Plant of Europe, the joint agreement aims for a tenfold increase in offshore wind power capacity in the region, with total investments from the private sector expected to reach €135 billion.

“Today’s agreement by the energy ministers is an important milestone in cross-border cooperation. It is the basis for the first real European power plants that also generate electricity from renewable energies,” explained Germany’s Vice-Chancellor Robert Habeck. He added that this would further reduce our dependence on gas imports. Implication was that the four countries are trying to depend less on Russia for gas import which is arm twisting the west into acquiescing to its invasion on Ukraine.

The four countries also highlighted the importance of “speeding up” permitting procedures at EU level, in line with the European Commission’s ‘REPowerEU’ plan presented a day before. To accelerate deployment, the EU executive wants to make permitting procedures simpler, with new wind and solar projects being declared a matter of “overriding public interest”, and ‘go-to’ areas introduced at the national level in zones with low environmental risk.

With Germany, Denmark, the Netherlands and Belgium throwing their weight behind faster permitting, the North Sea looks like an ideal candidate to become the EU’s first “go-to” zone for renewables.

The agreement will provide power for more than 200 million households. At the same time, the four countries want to intensify cooperation in the production of “green” hydrogen from renewable electricity, with plans to expand related infrastructure in the region. Green hydrogen, a rare premium commodity, is highly coveted by steelmakers looking to produce carbon-neutral steel. The North Sea wind farms should play a major role in supplying sufficient hydrogen, policymakers say.

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