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Dutch and German North Sea surges offshore wind energy

4C Offshore | Chloe Emanuel
By: Chloe Emanuel 29/01/2024 TenneT

In 2023, TenneT, a prominent European electricity transmission system operator, achieved significant milestones in the transmission of wind energy from the North Sea to the mainland, reflecting the robust growth of renewable energy in the region.

Germany witnessed noteworthy success as TenneT transmitted approximately 19.24 terawatt-hours (TWh) of wind energy from the German North Sea to the mainland in 2023. Despite a 9% decrease compared to the previous year, the total wind energy generation in Germany reached an impressive 148.97 TWh, primarily due to a substantial increase in onshore wind power.


The Netherlands experienced a remarkable surge in wind energy transmission, with 11.54 TWh transferred from sea to land in 2023, a significant increase from the previous year's 7.91 TWh. TenneT's new offshore grid connection system, Hollandse Kust (noord), played a pivotal role in this growth.


In terms of transmission capacities, TenneT's transmission capacity in the Dutch North Sea soared to 4,666 MW in 2023, complementing the onshore wind energy capacity of 6,854 MW.


However, Tim Meyerjürgens, COO of TenneT, highlighted challenges in the German North Sea due to onshore grid congestions, impacting the efficiency of wind power utilization. The completion of the DolWin6 offshore grid connection in September 2023 increased TenneT's offshore transmission capacity to 8,032 MW.


From Tim Meyerjürgens' perspective, the urgent need for continued efforts in grid expansion was emphasized to fully harness the potential of the North Sea as a wind power resource. The impact of onshore grid congestions on wind farm operations underscores the urgency of accelerating grid expansion for efficient wind energy generation and pricing.

Examining offshore balance sheet data, in the German North Sea, the maximum feed-in capacity of offshore wind farms reached 6,491 MW, while the Dutch North Sea recorded a maximum value of 3,356 MW. The installed capacity of offshore wind farms in the German North Sea was 7,106 MW, and in the Dutch North Sea, it reached 5,622 MW by the end of 2023.

In conclusion, the year 2023 marked a significant advancement in offshore wind energy transmission, showcasing the dedication of TenneT and the overall growth of renewable energy in Germany and the Netherlands. Despite challenges, the continued expansion of transmission capacities and grid infrastructure remains crucial for maximizing the potential of the North Sea as a sustainable energy source for Europe.


For more information about offshore wind farm projects across the globe, click here.

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