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By 2023, the new wind farm off the coast of Egmond aan Zee should be fully operational and soon after that, it could supply green electricity to a million Dutch people. This is possible thanks to the combined capacity of 759 MW and an annual yield of at least 3.3 TWh. The consortium CrossWind, a joint venture between Shell Nederland and Eneco, won the ‘Hollandse Kust (Noord)’ tender. Both parties emphasize that the construction will take place “without any government subsidies”.

The wind farm can make a substantial contribution to the objectives of the Dutch Climate Accord and the European Green Deal, Shell and Eneco say in a statement. The wind farm will be located 18.5 kilometres off the Dutch coast.

Ups and downs

Offshore wind projects do not produce electricity continuously. Balancing the ups and downs and integrating this electricity into the national energy system requires new technologies. For this reason, the offshore wind farm will include five specific technological innovations that are expected to be used on a large scale in the future:

  • a floating solar farm;
  • short-term battery storage;
  • turbines that are optimally located to reduce the mutual negative ‘wind shadow’ effects;
  • ‘green hydrogen’ produced by electrolysis as another storage technique;
  • and the combination of these individual measures together to guarantee a continuous power supply, regardless of the wind situation.

Collaboration

CrossWind wants to work closely together with universities and scientific institutes to further develop technological innovations. Maarten Wetselaar, director of Shell Integrated Gas and New Energies: “Wind at sea will play an important role in the global energy transition.” He calls the new wind farm “an important next step” in Shell’s ambition to become an energy company with net-zero emissions in 2050. “Or even sooner, in line with the pace of society. This wind farm is a crucial part of a new value chain – from wind to hydrogen – with our ambition to build a green hydrogen plant in Rotterdam and with NortH2.”

Kees-Jan Rameau, Chief Strategic Growth Officer Eneco, calls the project “the first offshore wind farm with innovations aimed at system integration. The sustainable locally generated energy will make an important contribution to our ambition to help every household and company in the Netherlands to switch to a sustainable and clean energy supply”.

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About the author

Author profile picture Bart Brouwers is co-founder and co-owner of Media52 BV, the publisher of innovationorigins.com.