13 march 2017

[4C Note: this sounds wonderful, except for one thing. The project is scheduled for completion "hopefully" only by 2050, which will be a quarter century too late to avoid a climate catastrophe. Given the relatively minor cost of the island and the urgency of the worsening climate situation, could it not be completed within the coming decade?]

Artificial island to power Europe

Graeme Paton, Transport Correspondent, The Times, March 13 2017

The island 62 miles off the east coast of England would have homes, a lake, an airstrip and port and be surrounded by 7,000 wind turbines

An artificial island with an airport and harbour will be built in the North Sea under ambitious plans for a vast offshore renewable energy plant.

Proposals have been drawn up to create a 2.5 square mile island on Dogger Bank to service a network of wind turbines and solar panels.

The island would have homes for a small workforce and act as the hub for an energy supply distributed to six countries — Britain, the Netherlands, Denmark, Germany, Norway and Belgium.

The European Union-backed plans have been drawn up by a consortium of energy companies from the Netherlands, Denmark and Germany. They are expected to be agreed in Brussels on March 23.

Energinet, the Danish state-owned energy grid operator, said it hoped that the North Sea Wind Power Hub would be completed by 2050.

It said that the “power link island” may be joined by a second, depending on the size of the renewable energy network.

Costs for the project are expected to be minimised by the decision to build the island on Dogger Bank, which starts 62 miles off the east coast of England. It is relatively shallow, with depths of between 15 and 36 metres.

Torben Glar Nielsen, Energinet’s technical director, told The Independent: “Maybe it sounds a bit crazy and science fiction-like but an island on Dogger Bank could make the wind power of the future a lot cheaper and more effective.”

An artist’s impression shows that the island would sit amid a network of about 7,000 wind turbines.

It would have a sea port capable of accommodating tankers alongside the airport, complete with a small control tower and terminal.

Housing, workshops, roads, trees, green space and an artificial lake would be built, with a beach surrounding part of the island.

The Copenhagen Post reported that the island would cost just over £1.1 billion.

It would feed power to more than 80 million people as part of a plan designed to meet European targets to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

Energinet said: “Wind and solar energy complement each other: there is more sun from spring to autumn, and more wind in the colder and darker months of the year. So a sustainable and stable energy system for the future will need solar and wind energy, both on a large scale.


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