Belgium to Create Artificial Island for Wind Energy Production - Energy Minister
BRUSSELS (Sputnik) - Belgium is planning to create an artificial island in the North Sea for the production, storage and distribution of electricity generated on wind farms, Belgian Energy Minister Tinne Van der Straeten said on Friday.
Belgium is determined to completely abandon nuclear power plants in the coming years.
"We will build an island in the sea to connect the second zone, thus we will triple the production of electricity in the North Sea," the minister told reporters in Brussels.
The island will house wind generators, power storage facilities, and distribution stations to connect to the power supply systems of neighboring countries. The second zone of wind turbines is expected to be located directly in the sea around the island.
The project is expected to begin at the end of 2026, so that by 2030, the North Sea will generate 30% of Belgium's electricity. As of 2021, this share is about 10%.
Belgium, which currently relies on nuclear power as a source of half of its electricity consumption, signed a new energy pact in 2018, according to which the country's seven nuclear reactors would be closed by 2025 and investment would be redirected to renewable energy infrastructure, in particular offshore wind farms.
In November, the Belgian government will decide whether to go on with the plan to shut down all nuclear reactors by 2025 or let the two newest nuclear reactors keep functioning.