North Sea 3.0: The era of hybrid grids, energy islands and PtX is coming

April 13, 2023
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2 min read
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The era of the North Sea 3.0 has begun. The outlines of large-scale power-to-X and new energy infrastructure solutions are materializing. What will the post-2030 North Sea look like?

With 200 GW of additional offshore wind planned in the North Sea region in the next two decades, there is a need to find new routes-to-market and rethink offshore energy infrastructure.

LARGE-SCALE PTX TO TAKE OFF AROUND 2030

Short-term, most routes-to-market for offshore wind will be the conventional delivery of electrons to the grid – although with less financial support than previously. The big gamechanger is set to come when large-scale power-to-X projects start taking off around 2030.

The North Sea countries have combined targets of 20 GW renewable hydrogen by 2030. And there are ambitions both politically and commercially to massively increase this after 2030.

Vast new infrastructure is required for these enormous volumes of renewable energy. Novel solutions for offshore electricity transmission are emerging, such as hybrid grids, energy islands and offshore energy hubs, and to facilitate hydrogen production and consumption, a hydrogen infrastructure backbone has been mapped across Europe.

The combination of different forms of renewable energy and infrastructure solutions connecting projects to multiple countries is key to the future energy system in Europe, but it adds complexity and calls for increased cooperation.

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