European TSOs to partner on island hub

EUROPE: Transmission system operators (TSOs) in the Netherlands, Germany and Denmark are to work together on developing power link on an artificial island in the North Sea.

Tennet and will partner to push on with the Power Islands concept
Tennet and will partner to push on with the Power Islands concept

In June 2016, Dutch transmission operator Tennet unveiled plans for an interconnected North Sea with an island concept.

The island would be able to link North Sea countries with the offshore wind capacity there, and act as an interlink between grid systems in the UK, Norway, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium.

Now, Tennet with its German subsidiary and Danish TSO will sign a collaboration agreement at the North Seas Energy Forum in Brussels on 23 March to "press ahead" with the plan.

Discussions with other operators and infrastructure firms are still ongoing. It is hoped a consortium would be formed to realise the project, said.

Under current plans, up to 100GW of offshore wind capacity could be connected via the island or islands in the middle of the North Sea on Dogger Bank, where wind speeds are strong and water depths are reduced.

"This project can significantly contribute to a completely renewable supply of electricity in north-west Europe. TSOs are best placed to play a leading role in the long-term development of the offshore infrastructure," said Tennet CEO Mel Kroon.

"Large wind farms way out at sea will connect to a Power Link, an island. Far-shore will become near shore and economies of scale will reduce costs," said.

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