The North Sea as a Hub

For Renewable Energy, Sustainable Economies, and Biodiversity

Published: 23/03/2017

The vision of an offshore renewable energy grid as the powerhouse for a decarbonized Northwestern European electricity system by 2050 is widely shared. A joint effort needs to be made in order to overcome the barriers to integrating the largest renewable energy source in a region that is ready to seize the opportunity. This Ecofys and Navigant white paper discusses the potential for a concise but full-spectrum approach to North Sea energy infrastructure.

Ecofys and Navigant investigate the opportunities such a system would bring to the region in terms of the sustainable development of energy, economies, and marine life. A North Sea Grid could make a significant contribution to supplying Europe with CO2-neutral electricity. For countries surrounding the North Sea, this could be up to 15% of the region’s total electricity demand by 2030.

Since the realization of a North Sea energy system will equally require a comprehensive understanding of the involved barriers, the paper also addresses the challenges and makes early suggestions on how to overcome them.

This paper is the second in a series of Ecofys and Navigant thought leadership pieces. Find the first paper on a potential North Sea Grid powerhouse here.