DENMARK PLANS WORLD’S FIRST “ENERGY ISLANDS”


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The Danish government has unveiled plans to build an artificial island about 50 miles off the Jutland peninsula in the North Sea that will become an energy hub, directing green energy to millions of onshore consumers.
A similar installation is planned for the existing island of Bornholm.
In its first phase, the human-made island – the size of 18 soccer fields – and its natural sibling will gather electricity produced by 200 surrounding wind turbines that will power three million homes.
As the project grows in the future, the number of turbines could reach 600, and the artificial island could more than triple in size.
At that scale, the energy hubs together could deliver 12 gigawatts of power, about 1.5 times Denmark’s current total demand, to ten million European households, about twice as many as in all of Denmark. The electricity will be delivered through transnational, interconnected energy grids.
Denmark foresees the islands eventually storing green electricity and using a portion to produce green liquid fuels, such as hydrogen, to be piped through undersea tubes to the European mainland.
Denmark will be the island’s majority owner, but it is recruiting private companies as partners to provide technical and business expertise.
Studies have estimated that by 2040 the North Sea could be producing enough wind energy to light 150 million homes across Europe. That capacity is unlikely to be reached, however, due to issues related to shipping and the North Sea’s notorious heavy weather.
Denmark is the North Sea’s largest oil producer but has ceased granting new drilling and production licenses and has set 2050 as the end date for offshore petroleum production there.
TRENDPOST: Energy hubs will be a component of the next-generation energy network. Unlike utility companies, which usually make the power they sell, hubs will aggregate electricity from a variety of green sources and store it in battery banks to ensure power is available on demand when winds are calm or the sun has set.
Like Denmark’s, hubs offer will offer a new testbed and market niche for energy entrepreneurs, aggregators, and technology development.
Photo Credit: Danish Ministry of Climate, Energy, and Utilities

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