The first wind energy zone in the Belgian North Sea has been fully built within the set timeframe. The last two wind farms in this zone, Northwester II and SeaMade, were built and commissioned in spring and autumn 2020 respectively. With these two new wind farms, 8 wind farms are now operational in the Belgian North Sea, with a total installed capacity of 2,262 MW.
In 2020, Belgian offshore wind farms generated 6.7 terawatt hours (TWh) of electricity. This represents 8.4% of total electricity consumption in Belgium or the electricity consumption of around 1.9 million families. From 2021 onwards, the 8 wind farms will together produce around 8 TWh of renewable energy annually. This corresponds to the electricity consumption of approximately 2.2 million families, which is almost half of Belgian households, or 10% of the total electricity demand in our country.
But how much electricity do the offshore wind farms produce today? Discover offshore wind production every day thanks to our new online tool.
|Wind farms in the Belgian North Sea||Production capacity|
|C-Power (2009–2013)||325 MW|
|Belwind (2010)||171 MW|
|Northwind (2014)||216 MW|
|Nobelwind (2017)||165 MW|
|Rentel (2018)||309 MW|
|Norther (2019)||370 MW|
|Northwester 2 (2020)||219 MW|
|Seamade (2020)||487 MW|
|Entire first offshore wind zone in Belgium||2262 MW|
Status of wind farms in the Belgian part of the North Sea on 1 January 2021
The first wind turbines in the Belgian North Sea were installed at the C-Power offshore wind farm in 2009. Since then, the installed capacity has gradually increased from 30 MW in 2009 to 2,262 MW in 2020. Offshore wind energy has developed remarkably fast in the recent years: in 2020 alone, the installed capacity increased by 706 MW (23 new wind turbines of 9.5 MW and 58 new wind turbines of 8.4 MW). This is a spectacular 45% increase in one year time.
Now the first offshore energy zone has been completed, construction works are expected to remain at a standstill for a few years while awaiting the official tender procedure for new developments in the more western Princess Elisabeth Zone, where space is already allocated for doubling wind capacity at sea to 4.5GW.
“Wind energy at sea is a particularly important cornerstone of the sustainable energy transition in Belgium”, says 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”.
Don’t forget to watch our animation video on wind energy in the Belgian North Sea: