We are at a crossroads where different crises need to be tackled simultaneously: climate change, biodiversity loss, energy security, and economic recovery. On the one hand, Europe has made ambitious commitments for the expansion of wind energy infrastructure, with offshore wind representing a significant share of the new capacity to be deployed. On the other hand, the European Commission has proposed an EU Nature Restoration Law, which aims to restore 20% of EU’s land and sea ecosystems by 2030.
These twin ambitions can come into conflict, as all infrastructure has an environmental impact. However, there are opportunities for the offshore wind and grid sectors to go beyond emissions reduction and apply measures that can not only minimise environmental risks but contribute to the enhancement of ecosystems. This is particularly important for the offshore environment, where wind infrastructure, and consequently the connecting grid, is expected to increase from 30 GW today to more than 150 GW by 2030.