On Monday evening, 13 June 2016, the CEOs of 15 ‘front-runners in the offshore wind sector’ announced their ambition to play a leading role in the offshore wind sector. The partners ratified their collaboration, which will continue under the name ‘Rotterdam Offshore Wind Delta’, with the signing of a manifesto.
Pictured (from left to right): Jim Craig, Chris Westra, Pieter van Oord, Peter van der Linde, Jan Bruggenthijs, Ron Voskuilen, Astrid Kee, Gerard Zwartkruis, Ronald Prins, Allard Castelein, Focko Dorhout Mees, Maarten Struijvenberg, Miranda Janse, Ruben Dijkstra, Aalt Leusink, Harold Linssen, Rob van der Hage, Sander Splinter, Kim Bybjerg and Felix Moonen.
The manifesto was signed by the following organisations: Van Oord, Boskalis, Mammoet, SIF Group, Ampelmann, Falck, STC-Group, Keppel Verolme, Eneco, Marsh, Rabobank, Jules Dock, the Port of Rotterdam Authority, the Municipality of Rotterdam and Rotterdam Partners.
Watershed moment for wind energy
The European climate objectives, which outline an 80-95% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 in comparison with 1990, necessitate large-scale and far-reaching systemic changes. The Dutch Cabinet foresees a crucial role for offshore wind farms in the North Sea in the upcoming energy transition. During the meeting of the Energy Council on 6 June, the ‘North Sea countries’ the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, Luxemburg, France, Denmark, Ireland, Sweden and Norway already agreed to work more closely together in the planning and construction of offshore wind farms. This was also emphasised by the Dutch Minister Kamp: “In the next seven years, the Netherlands will be constructing the five largest wind farms in Europe – and perhaps even the world. These wind turbines will soon be supplying electricity to 5 million Dutch households.”
In the period until 2020, this will involve – in the Netherlands – 3.5 GW in power, EUR 20 million in investments and around 15,000 to 25,000 new jobs. The coalition sees major opportunities for Rotterdam, mainly in light of the region’s favourable starting position when it comes to construction, service & maintenance, operation and provision of services. This is in part thanks to the many companies in the port of Rotterdam that are involved in the development of offshore wind power. In addition, the port area offers the right facilities for this programme: sufficient room for the wind turbines’ assembly, construction and maintenance; a large potential workforce and training and education facilities.
Towards a position paper
In the period ahead, the coalition will set to work on the drafting of a position paper that is intended to give concrete shape to the partners’ collaboration, ambitions and initial actions. This document will also treat subjects like policy and lobby, acquisition, education and training, innovation and marketing and branding in more detail. The coalition expects to publish the position paper in mid-September.
AET and Offshore Wind
The public-private partnership is an outcome of the Versnelling Economische Transitie (Acceleration of the Economic Transition, VET) project: an initiative of the Municipality of Rotterdam intended to accelerate initiatives undertaken by companies and entrepreneurs in collaboration with its partners the Port of Rotterdam Authority, InnovationQuarter, Deltalinqs, Rotterdam Partners, iTanks and Clean Tech Delta. This support is offered to regional initiatives that contribute to our transition towards the ‘new economy’.