GL Garrad Hassan, part of the GL Group’s renewables business segment, has presented a new report outlining the potential for large scale offshore wind power deployment in the Baltic Sea Region (BSR).

According to the report's conclusions, the offshore wind resource in the Baltic Sea Region is considerable:

"Based on an initial evaluation of the three primary cost drivers for offshore wind deployment - namely wind speed, water depth and distance from shore - and utilizing current assumptions regarding turbine size and capacity density, there are space for approximately 300 GW of offshore wind energy capacity in locations considered attractive with current technology".

The study also found that accounting for estimations on known environmental and social constraints and then assuming a further 80% rate of attrition due to constraints not considered, there "would remain approximately 40 GW of capacity deployment potential".

The report was sponsored by the Baltic Sea Region Energy Cooperation (BASREC), a Ministerial process designed to promote sustainable growth, security and prosperity in the region through the energy sector. “We undertook an analysis of the offshore energy generation potential in the BSR and how deployment of generation capacity in the region could be accelerated, through an examination of attractive areas for development, grid and interconnection issues, and the regulatory and market conditions in the BSR nations.” explained David Williams, GL Garrad Hassan.

The report is designed to give the BASREC partners (Norway, Sweden, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Denmark, Germany, Poland, Russia and the European Commission), a set of concrete initiatives on which they can cooperate to promote offshore wind power, according to Garrad Hassan.

From the analysis two sets of strategic initiatives for the region were provided. The first detailed actions required to fulfil renewable energy targets for 2020, while the second detailed those actions recommended to position the BSR as a world leader in offshore wind development. The strategic initiatives are based around four themes; policy and regulation, research and demonstration, grid integration and environmental planning.

Jörg Neubauer, Project Manager, Swedish Energy Agency, commented on the study, “we are already seeing strategic discussions taking off and are looking forward to the concrete offspring of these talks, as we further our cooperative efforts to develop offshore wind in the coming BASREC working period.”