Wind at sea is playing a major role in the energy transition and climate agreements. Achieving the related goals will demand lots of sustainably generated power to support issues like the electrification of the industry and the mobility & replacement of natural gas in the built environment. Hydrogen, the product itself and its storage, also require a great deal of electricity. Wind at sea offers an ideal solution for large-scale generation.
Accommodating the plans for wind at sea in the Netherlands between 2030 to 2050 demands space for 27 GW on top of the 11 GW. This total of 38 GW will ensure the Netherlands can fulfil its own energy demand as much as possible.
The UK has goals for 40 GW in 2030 and will have to expand to 75 GW to attain zero CO2 emissions. Between 7 and 8.5 GW are included in the so-called ‘Fourth Round’ licensing procedure.
In addition to the wind farms, production of new turbines is also increasing. The 36 turbines installed in our first wind farm at sea, Noordzeewind, produce 3 MW each. Together they generate sustainable electricity for over 100,000 households. The Hollandse Kust wind farm will feature turbines of 11 MW each – nearly four times as much in a period of just over ten years. Energy generation is becoming increasingly efficient.
The Netherlands is rapidly switching to green power that is increasingly generated sustainably by wind turbines at sea. The construction of the future wind farms Hollandse Kust Noord, Zuid, West and IJmuiden Ver off the coast of our region will bring a substantial stream of offshore activities to the province of North Holland. These are some of the results of joint research conducted by the ports of IJmuiden, Den Helder and Amsterdam, and reviewed by TNO. Dorothy Winters, offshore wind programme manager at AYOP, was one of the supervisors of report author, Jesse Bruijnzeels from Port of Amsterdam. The report can be downloaded here.
Knowledge and experience
Our region has already gained valuable experience with the first three wind farms in the Netherlands: Noordzeewind, Prinses Amalia and Luchterduinen, and the construction of the Westermeerwind park on the IJsselmeer lake. Two world records will be broken at the time of delivery. Autumn 2020 saw construction start on the Ijsselmeer of the largest near-shore farm Windpark Fryslân, with 89 turbines. In 2022 Vattenfall will begin building the Hollandse Kust Zuid wind farm, offering a total of 140 turbines. Crosswinds, a partnership between Shell and Eneco, will also commence construction of the Hollandse Kust Noord wind farm in 2022.
AYOP-members are already active in the maintenance of existing wind farms off the coast and our region serves as the maintenance base for Hollandse Kust Zuid. In addition, a combination of companies from Velsen is supplying a significant number of cables for various European wind projects. The region also developed an innovative system for safe transfer from vessel to turbine, and another new system is underway. Moreover, work vessels that supply the wind farms can have their maintenance and a variety of modifications completed here. And that’s just a small percentage of our members’ products and services.
The 20-fold increase of wind at sea off our coast can only be realised if a number of crucial conditions are met, something which our region and members can certainly facilitate via:
- Knowledge and experience
- Broad product and service portfolio
- Network and existing partnerships
- Development of the Energy Port (extra space for activities like storage and assembly, directly by the sea)
- A focus on suitable staff and innovation.