Findings released from eight-year study on offshore
wind farms in Denmark show projects "operate in
harmony with the surrounding environment."
home to Horns Rev and Nysted offshore wind farms,
has completed an eight-year study -- and consequent
144-page report -- conducted by Danish energy and
environment government agencies on the impacts of
Horns Rev and Nysted on the aquatic ecosystem including
birds, fish, seals and life found on the seabed.
The findings were released last week at the Final
Results: The Danish Monitoring Programme conference
held in Denmark. The report confirms that both the
Horns Rev and Nysted offshore wind farms will be
doubled in size in the coming years. Prepared by
the Danish Energy Authority, Danish Forest and Nature
Agency, Dong Energy and Vattenfall (the companies
that own the two offshore wind farms), the report
also contains commentary from the International
Advisory Panel of Experts on Marine Ecology, which
gave the report a positive evaluation.
|This publication describes the Danish experiences
with offshore wind power and discusses the challenges
of environmental issues that Denmark has had
to address in relation to the two large-scale
demonstration offshore wind farms Horns Rev
and Nysted since 1999.
Preface: The Power Source for the Future
Our future energy supply faces numerous challenges
and has become subject to unstable international
conditions. To meet these challenges, offshore wind
has a key role to play. Offshore windpower can contribute
significantly to achieving the EU goals of a 21
percent share of renewable electricity by 2010,
halting global warming and reducing our dependence
on coal, oil and gas.
We have come a long way since
the 1980s, when most electricity production was
based on coal and when the acidification of forests
and lakes by acid rain was the predominant theme
in the environmental debate. Today wind power provides
20% of Danish electricity consumption.
few years, the wind power industry has grown to
become a significant industrial sector providing
huge benefits for exports and employment. We are
now talking about windpower generation plants rather
than single turbines, and the Danish wind power
industry is at the leading edge in an ever more
competitive global market.
In the energy strategy
for 2025 the Government expects to see a significant
increase in the use of renewable energy in the years
to come. The market-based expansion of this sector
will be brought about through incentive schemes
and investment in physical infrastructure as well
as research-, development- and demonstration.
higher oil prices and high CO2 allowance prices
we expect that a significant proportion of the renewable
energy expansion will be delivered by large, offshore
wind farms. At sea, wind resources are better and
suitable sites are more readily available to enable
these large projects to operate in harmony with
the surrounding environment.
We are therefore very
pleased that the Danish environmental monitoring
program on large scale offshore wind power has received
a positive evaluation by the International Advisory
Panel of Experts on Marine Ecology.
To sustain public
acceptance and provide continued protection to vulnerable
coastal and marine habitats, it is important to
build upon the positive experience gained so far
with the use of marine spatial planning instruments.
Offshore Wind farms impact on their natural surroundings
and it is essential to ensure that conditions in
unique marine areas are not detrimentally affected.
Spatial planning when identifying potential locations
for off shore wind farms -- taking into account
grid connection routes and other areas of interests
-- must ensure that future offshore wind farms are
established in suitable areas in such a way that
substantial adverse environmental impacts can be
avoided or diminished. One of the challenges we
face is to assess the cumulative effects from multiple
offshore wind farms to arrive at optimal site selection.
Thus a committee on future offshore wind farms is
currently updating the Danish action plan from 1997
to use the experience and learning gained to date
in order to identify appropriate locations and at
the same time to minimize visual disturbances and
the effects on animal species such as marine birds
This publication describes the Danish
experiences with offshore wind power and discusses
the challenges of environmental issues that Denmark
has had to address in relation to the two large-scale
demonstration offshore wind farms Horns Rev and
Nysted since 1999.
-- Flemming Hansen, Minister for Transport and
Energy, and Connie Hedegaard, Minister for the Environment