The Danish Ministry of Climate, Energy and Utilities has requested Energinet to expand the current feasibility study areas at the Bornholm Energy Island site in the Baltic Sea, which could allow for installing 1 GW of offshore wind capacity more and also be the new place where the Hesselø project could be built.
The new Bornholm Energy Island project borders, stretching 15 kilometres offshore, could accommodate 3 GW instead of 2 GW of offshore wind capacity set out in the Climate Agreement from June 2020. Expanding offshore wind areas at Bornholm to accommodate more than 2 GW will require a new political decision.
Energinet received permission to start the feasibility studies this June and has already started to investigate the seabed and environmental conditions in the areas where the government decided to set up offshore wind farms.
The Ministry said the area of study was being expanded based on experience from other offshore wind projects showing that it was appropriate to pre-study a larger area, since some parts may prove to be unusable. The waters off Bornholm may be a relevant alternative to build the wind farm planned offshore Hesselø, if it cannot be realised at its currently designated site, according to the Danish Energy Agency (DEA).
The area around Bornholm may also be relevant if the government decides to add more offshore wind capacity by 2030. The order only provides an opportunity to study the areas, and a new political decision will be required to use the expanded areas for the development of offshore wind projects, DEA said.
In addition to offshore wind farms in the Baltic Sea, the order issued to Energinet includes feasibility studies for cable connections between the energy island and offshore wind farms, export cables to Zealand, and interconnections with neighboring countries.
The feasibility studies form a basis for future strategic environmental assessment (SEA) of the plan for the Bornholm Energy Island and will also reduce construction risk for building the island, networks, and offshore wind farms.