New planning for offshore wind energy: 21 gigawatts in 2032

Last checked on:
15 May 2024
Published on:
14 May 2024

The planning schedule for permit tender procedures and construction of offshore wind farms is changing. Instead of 2030/2031, the Netherlands wants to have 21 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind energy at the end of 2032. This gives developers and companies more time to realise the wind farms and grid connections.

New wind farms

The Letter to Parliament sets out the schedule for the permit tenders and commissioning of all new wind farms up to and including 2032. Until 2027, wind farm developers can apply for permits from the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO) for wind farms with a total of approximately 15 GW of wind energy. This includes the permits for the IJmuiden Ver Wind Farm Sites Alpha and Beta, the winners of which will probably be known in June.

Developers will be building new wind farms in the North Sea until 2032. Together with existing wind farms and wind farms currently under construction, we will reach 21 GW at the end of 2032. The full schedule is in the table below.

Planning offshore wind farms
Installed power Wind Farm Site (WFS) Permit procedure (Expected) commissioning of wind farm
0.76 GW Hollandse Kust (west) WFS VI 2022 2026-2027
0.76 GW Hollandse Kust (west) WFS VII 2022 2027
About 2 GW IJmuiden Ver WFS Alpha Q1 2024 Q3 2029
About 2 GW IJmuiden Ver WFS Beta Q1 2024 Q4 2029
About 2 GW IJmuiden Ver WFS Gamma Q3 2025 Q2 2031
About 2 GW Nederwiek (zuid) WFS I Q3 2025 Q4 2030
About 2 GW Nederwiek (noord) WFS II Q2-Q4 2026 Q2 2032
About 2 GW Nederwiek (noord) WFS III Q2-Q4 2026 Q4 2031
About 2 GW Doordewind WFS I Q1-Q2 2027 Q4 2032

Challenges for offshore wind energy

There are several challenges that always arise when realising plans for offshore wind energy. For example, think of:

  • Taking nature and environment into account (ecology).
  • Spatial integration of offshore wind energy in connection with mining.
  • Other activities in the North Sea, such as fishing, shipping and defense.

The Letter to Parliament contains 3 reasons for the adjusted planning.

Lead time of grid connections

It is taking longer than expected to complete the spatial procedures for the grid connections in the Doordewind, Nederwiek (noord) and Hollandse Kust (west) Wind Farm Zones (WFZs). These zones are included in the tender schedule, but have been pushed back. This is also because the cables to the Doordewind WFZ cross the Wadden Sea. This brings spatial challenges.

Parts for grid connections

Companies that supply components for grid connections cannot meet increasing global demand. This will delay delivery of the electricity (substation) platforms for Nederwiek WFS II and IJmuiden Ver WFS Gamma by one year.

Connecting wind farms to the electricity grid

In addition, more time is needed to connect large wind farms of approximately 2 GW to the offshore electricity grid. That is why the new schedule gives future developers extra time to connect these wind farms. This means the delivery date of the wind farms is being pushed back.

New Development Framework

The adjusted planning schedule also leads to a new Development Framework for Offshore Wind Energy. The Development Framework sets out the conditions for design, construction, operation and service life of the offshore electricity grid. As choices for the design of the offshore grid have a direct influence on the wind farms, the clarity the Development Framework provides in advance is important. The new Development Framework is available on the RVO page Aanlanding windenergie op zee: van zee naar land (in Dutch).

Next permits

RVO and an independent expert committee are currently assessing the applications for permits for IJmuiden Ver Wind Farm Sites Alpha and Beta. The next permit tender is scheduled for the 3rd quarter of 2025. This concerns permits for the construction and operation of wind farms for approximately 4 GW at IJmuiden Ver Gamma and Nederwiek I.

A Letter to Parliament about these permit tenders will follow shortly. It contains more details about what exactly the tender procedure will look like. The size of the Wind Farm Sites and possible further standardisation of wind turbines are also discussed.

Want to know more?

Commissioned by:
  • Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy
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