Deep offshore wind energy could produce 3x EU’s electricity consumption

Brussels, 26 July – A new report by the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) estimates that deep offshore wind farms could employ 318,000 people and power around 145,000 households by 2030.

Brussels, 26 July – A new report by the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) estimates that deep offshore wind farms could employ 318,000 people and power around 145,000 households by 2030.

Floating offshore wind turbines are still being tested, but in the study, named ‘Deep water – The next step for offshore wind energy’, EWEA believe that they could be ready for market by 2017 and be cost competitive with fixed-bottom turbines.

Europe currently only has installed offshore wind capacity of 5GW (though this is 90% of global installed capacity), but the report estimates that if deep offshore potential was fully utilised, it would meet the EU’s electricity consumption three times over.

At present there are only two deep offshore floating wind turbines in operation; one in the North Sea and one in the Atlantic. However, there are several floating structures being tested around Europe.

Greenovate! Europe is taking part in the FP7 project, FLOATGEN, which aims to deliver two different floating turbine systems, demonstrated in waters with a depth greater than 40 meters. In 2012, the average depth of offshore turbines was 20m. With a contribution of €19 million, FLOATGEN is the largest wind demonstration project ever financed by the European Commission.

To find out more, visit our FLOATGEN feature, or the project website.

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