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Nine North Sea countries aim to develop 300 GW of offshore wind by 2050

Nine European countries (Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway and the UK) have signed the Ostend declaration following an offshore wind summit in Belgium, in which they pledge to build 120 GW of offshore wind in the North Sea by 2030 and 300 GW by 2050. By 2030, up to 50 GW would be set up in the United Kingdom (including 5 GW of floating wind), at least 26 GW in Germany, around 21 GW in the Netherlands and 6 GW in Belgium; the remainder would be installed in Denmark (at least 5.3 GW), Ireland (4.5 GW), Norway (3 GW), and France (2.1 GW).

These goals increase those set by the Esbjerg Declaration signed in 2022 by Germany, Belgium, Denmark and the Netherlands, which originally targeted 150 GW of offshore wind power in the North Sea by 2050. The nine countries have agreed to jointly develop the North Sea as a green power plant of Europe by connecting up countries with hybrid, multi-purpose and cross-border offshore projects and hubs, which include the possibility for co-financing by countries without direct access to the sea.

As of end-2021, the European Union had a combined offshore wind capacity totalling just above 15 GW (and more than 180 GW onshore). Among EU countries, Germany (7.8 GW), the Netherlands (2.5 GW) and Denmark (2.3 GW) ranked first in offshore wind capacities. For non-EU countries, the UK alone had 12.7 GW by the end of 2021, while Norway only had 6 MW).

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