Danes see decrease in wind energy production despite increased capacity

4C Offshore | Tom Russell
By: 31/12/2021 Energinet
Despite the commissioning of new offshore wind turbines, Denmark saw a decrease in the amount of electricity from wind energy this year. This was largely attributed to poor wind conditions throughout 2021.
The figures for 2021 also show that production from wind corresponded to 43.6% of electricity consumption, a noticeable decrease compared to 46.5% in 2020.  

"The decline is mainly due to the fact that 2021 was a historically bad wind year in Denmark and the whole of northwestern Europe for that matter. The wind resource in 2021 was thus approx. 10 pct. lower than a normal year, while in 2020 it was approx. 4 pct. higher. At the same time, electricity consumption in Denmark has increased by almost 5 per cent. from 2020 to 2021, which also contributes to a lower wind share,"
said Jesper Kronborg, senior business developer at Energinet.

Denmark's largest offshore wind farm, the 600 MW
Kriegers Flak project was commissioned in 2021 and has supplied electricity to the grid for a large part of the year. The Vattenfall-owned site, located between 15 and 40 km off the east coast of Denmark features 72 Siemens Gamesa SG 8.0-167 DD wind turbines. Vattenfall secured rights to the 604.8 MW Kriegers Flak project in November 2016, with a winning bid of EUR 49.9 per MWh. Kriegers Flak is expected to provide enough power to cover the annual electricity consumption of approximately 600,000 Danish households.

"With Krigers Flak offshore wind farm in full operation all year and if 2022 becomes a fairly normal wind year, then you can probably expect a wind share in 2022, which - despite continued increasing electrification and electricity consumption - will approach 50 per cent,"
added Kronborg.

Danish authorities are actively supporting the development of offshore wind projects. The government named German-based energy company RWE winner of the concession for the
Thor offshore wind project this year. With a planned capacity of around 1,000 MW, Thor will be Denmark’s largest offshore wind farm to date.

The wind farm will be built off the Danish west coast and is scheduled to reach full operation in 2027. Once fully operational,
Thor is expected to be capable of producing enough electricity to supply the equivalent of around 1.4 million Danish households.

Furthermore, the Danish Energy Agency (DEA) is investigating the feasibility of an artificial energy island to form a connection between several countries and offshore wind farms in the North Sea. It is envisioned with a starting capacity of 3 GW from connected offshore wind farms. The capacity may increase to 10 GW in future. The total investments for the island itself, infrastructure and associated offshore wind farms will be approximately DKK 210 billion (€28 billion or £24 billion).

It was also announced that Vattenfall has taken the final investment decision for
Vesterhav Syd & Nord nearshore projects in Denmark. The wind farms are expected to be ready to provide electricity to by the end of 2023. Vesterhav Nord will have a capacity of 176.4 MW and will consist of 21 SG 8.0-167 DD turbines, each with a rated power of 8.4 MW. Vesterhav Syd will have a capacity of 168 MW and will consist of 20 turbines.

For more information on offshore wind farms worldwide, click here.