A Comparison of the European Regulatory Framework for the deployment of Offshore Renewable Energy Project
Keywords:Policy, WEC Deployment, Permitting procedures
The REPower EU Plan has set a minimum of total renewable energy generation capacity of 1,236 GW by 2030. Achieving this target, and emission reductions by 2050, will require the extensive deployment of offshore energy facilities, especially offshore wind (OW) and wave energy converters (WECs). However, an incomplete and sometimes unfavourable regulatory framework still jeopardises the feasibility of both prototypes and large-scale installations. There are, for example, significant differences between the permitting procedures in different Member States and regions. Moreover, following the transposition of the Directive 2014/89/EU “establishing a framework for maritime spatial planning”, important differences pertain to the way environmental and heritage protection is dealt with. An overview of the offshore permitting schemes for offshore wind in ten European counties (Germany, Denmark, Scotland, Sweden, France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Belgium, and Ireland) is provided, demonstrating a mismatch between the current members’ complex regulations and the future offshore wind targets. Using customised key performance indicators, we describe and assess the extent to which the regulatory frameworks are conducive to installing industrial devices in achieving the country’s 2030 target. Finally, we propose actions to facilitate the installation of OW while ensuring both environmental protection and industry development in the countries under investigation.
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