The first round of national and regional workshops in the WINDSPEED project was held between 27 March to 5 May 2009. The Norwegian workshop was held at SINTEF in Oslo on 30 April.
Text: Mette Kjelstad Høiseth
The workshops drew attention to the current key issues and challenges in the political debate about the development of offshore windpower.
The WINDSPEED project will engage stakeholders in the design and use of a GIS-based Decision Support System (DSS) that is to be developed in the project.This tool should be used as decision support for the location of offshore windfarms, taking into consideration costs, environmental impacts and other use of the waters.
The aim of the workshops was to create an interactive dialogue with experts and stakeholders on the design and functionality of the DSS tool.
Among the speakers in Oslo was assistant director Ove Flataker from the Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy. He talked about the possibilities for offshore windpower in Norway. Kjartan Hauglum from Statnett presented the outlook for offshore power networks in the North Sea.
Other participating companies / organizations were NVE, EBL, the Directorate for Nature Management (DN), the Research Council of Norway, Zero, Norwea, Statoil and Vestavind.
Wind – an important contribution
The use of offshore wind energy can contribute significantly to increasing the share of renewable energy in Europe's energy mix. But the competing use of the sea, the costs, power network integration and other barriers are important challenges in the development of offshore windpower.
Develop a road map
The WINDSPEED project is funded by Intelligent Energy Europe (2008-2011) and aims to help to overcome these obstacles by developing a road map that defines a realistic goal and a development of the route up to 2030 for offshore windpower in the central and southern North Sea (Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, Norway, United Kingdom).
The road map will also identify barriers and possible surplus conditions in the northern European electricity grid, together with recommendations about how to deal with them.
New round in 2010
Once a preliminary version of the DSS tool is developed, the second round of workshops will be held in 2010. Here participants can make critical evaluations of the tool before the final version is developed. This round will also discuss the design of the road map for offshore windpower in the North Sea until 2030.