Integrated Baltic offshore wind electricity grid development


March 2016 -
February 2019

Priority area:
Energy
2. Natural resources 2.2 Renewable energy

Baltic InteGrid

The project aims to contribute to sustainable indigenous electricity generation, further integration of electricity markets and security of supply in the Baltic Sea Region by optimizing the potential and efficiency of offshore wind energy. It will present plans for a coordinated Baltic Sea offshore grid and significantly reduce one of the most important bottlenecks for the development of renewable energy sources in the Baltic Sea Region.

Summary

 

According to the Baltic Sea Region Energy Cooperation (BASREC), offshore wind energy (OWE) in the Baltic Sea Region (BSR) has a potential of 130 GW. OWE therefore has an important role to play in the diversified, sustainable energy mix for which the EU is aiming. OWE can be developed under favourable circumstances in the Baltic Sea: Waters are relatively shallow, wave height is lower, tides are less pronounced and the distances to the shore are shorter than in the North Sea, resulting in lower installation and grid infrastructure costs.

By 2030, up to 12,2 GW in OWE capacity can be installed in the BSR. However, only about 1,1 GW was installed in 2014, out of 8 GW across Europe. The early stage of OWE development in the BSR is further evidenced by the more advanced, widespread state of OWE in the North Sea, where experiences from OWE development show that meshed grids can bring significant economic benefits. The European Commission's (EC’s) recently published “Study on the benefits of a meshed offshore grid in Northern Seas region” concludes that a meshed grid entails higher initial costs than radial connections, however these costs are outbalanced by annual savings especially if the EU member states also coordinate reserve capacities.

The need for a better coordination of OWE and grid planning in the BSR is also supported by BASREC’s recent study “Electricity Grid Expansion in the Context of Renewables Integration in the BSR”, which foresees an increase in regional electricity exchange until 2030, outlining the need for more interconnectors. Thus, the overall objective of the project is to contribute to sustainable indigenous electricity generation, further integration of electricity markets and security of supply in the BSR by applying the meshed grid approach to optimize the potential and efficiency of OWE. To this end, during the project lifetime the project partners from all eight EU members states in the BSR will work in close cooperation with key stakeholders towards the following main outputs:

  • Established Baltic Offshore Grid Forum (BOGF)
  • A high level concept for the Baltic Offshore Grid
  • Detailed feasibility studies for two case studies as components of the Baltic Grid Concept
  • Recommendations and propositions

In doing so, the project will connect relevant BSR wide stakeholders (transmission system operators (TSOs), OWE industry, policymakers, national authorities, academia) in debates and topical knowledge exchange with a view to optimize transnational coordination of OWE infrastructure. Additionally, the project’s innovative research efforts will equip stakeholders with state of the art insights on the framework conditions for the optimal development of a regional meshed grid. All project activities and outputs will bring forward plans for a coordinated Baltic Sea offshore grid and thus significantly reduce one of the most important bottlenecks for the development of renewable energy sources in the BSR.

Highlights by mid-term:

The Baltic InteGrid partnership has initiated a broad and profound discussion on how to plan, implement and operate a meshed offshore wind energy grid in the Baltic Sea. Not only does the discussion involve project partners but also other relevant stakeholders, such as transmission system operators, offshore wind energy industries, policymakers as well as academia and public authorities on national and regional levels in the Baltic Sea countries. The project helped to build the Baltic Offshore Grid Forum (BOGF) which is the platform where future offshore wind projects in the Baltic Sea region are discussed and planned.

In parallel, the project has elaborated the basics for two prefeasibility studies that exemplify the implementation of meshed grids in the Baltic Sea. One scenario displays a grid between Germany and Sweden and the other scenario is valid for an interconnection between Poland and Sweden.

Besides, the project was well recognised also on the European level as it was invited by the European Commission to join the consultations of the Renewable Energy Working Group on the Baltic Energy Market Integration Plan (BEMIP).

Budgets

Total
€ 3.95
million
Erdf
€ 3.04
million
Eni + Russia
€ 0.00
million
Norway
€ 0.00
million

PARTNERS

CONTACTS

Project manager

IKEM | Institute for Climate Protection, Energy and Mobility

Anika Nicolaas Ponder

4 930 408 187 015

Legal representative

Institute for Climate Protection, Energy and Mobility

Simon Schäfer-Stradowsky

4930 40 81 87 010

Financial manager

REM · Consult

Hakan Uraz

494 065 790 378

Communication manager

IKEM | Institute for Climate Protection, Energy and Mobility

Anika Nicolaas Ponder

4 930 408 187 015