Belgian offshore wind farms generate 6.7 TWh of electricity in 2020

Belgian offshore wind farms generated 6.7 TWh of electricity in 2020, which represented 8.4 per cent of total electricity consumption in Belgium, or the electricity consumption of around 1.9 million families.

Eight offshore wind farms are currently operational in the Belgian North Sea, with a total installed capacity of almost 2.3 GW. This includes Northwester 2 and SeaMade, on which the construction was completed in 2020.

The 219 MW Northwester 2 offshore wind farm was commissioned in May and the last wind turbine on the 487 MW SeaMade was installed in November.

The first wind turbines off Belgium’s coast were installed at the C-Power (Thornton Bank) offshore wind farm in 2009.

As of this year, the eight Belgian offshore wind farms will together produce around 8 TWh of electricity annually and will be able to cover 10 per cent of the total electricity demand in the country, the Belgian Offshore Platform (BOP) said.

According to the BOP, offshore wind farm construction in Belgium is now expected to hit a standstill for a few years, until the tender procedure for new developments in the more western Princess Elisabeth Zone kick things off again.

“Wind energy at sea is a particularly important cornerstone of the sustainable energy transition in Belgium,” said Hugo Canière, Secretary-General a.i. of the Belgian Offshore Platform. “Given the great importance of offshore wind energy in the European Green Deal and the European recovery policy, it is now more than ever time to speed up the further development of this technology, which can generate green electricity on a large scale and at the same time offer interesting economic opportunities, also in Belgium”.