Find out more about the North Sea energy island

The energy island is the beginning of a new era for the generation of offshore wind power that will secure green energy supply to Danish and foreign power grids. The island will play a major role in phasing out fossil fuel energy sources in both Denmark and Europe. 

The energy island will be the largest construction project in Denmark’s history to date. The island will connect the surrounding offshore wind farms and countries in one single network and become a hub for the development of new green technologies. 

The planning of the energy island is still in its initial stages. This means that the island's exact design – and thus the tender – has not yet been determined. Here, we answer some of the most frequently asked questions based on the current publicly available information.

  • What is an energy island?
    An energy island collects the energy from surrounding offshore wind turbines and transmits it onshore through cable connections. The construction of the energy island in the North Sea makes it possible to place offshore wind turbines further from shore where wind conditions are better, thus increasing their wind power generation. The energy island will have links to neighbouring countries in the North Sea. This will make it possible to export renewable energy on a large scale.
  • Why build an energy island? 

    An energy island at the heart of a large network of offshore wind farms with links to several countries, will make it possible to produce renewable energy more efficiently.

    The energy island will be designed to support a multilinked approach; cables and interconnections built in the North Sea will reach a number of wind farms and allow for the joint development of wind, and other green energy, to be transmitted between neighbouring countries. This reduces the need for cables and further infrastructure to be built independently, therefore reducing the impact on sea habitat and wildlife, and cost. 

    Discover more about the great potential of the North Sea areas

  • Why will the energy island to be linked to other countries?
    Links between countries are of great value to Denmark. Links ensure cost-effective use of the power we produce and reduce the costs connected with ensuring an adequate supply of power to electricity consumers in Denmark. When we link several countries through the energy island, it will give us better opportunities to use wind energy efficiently and incorporate it in the overall European grid in a cost-effective way. The links also represent an income opportunity in power trading. 
  • Which countries will the energy island be linked with?

    Belgium has already signed a cooperation agreement to be linked to the Danish energy island in the North Sea.

    Further links are expected to be established with Germany, the Netherlands, and possibly Norway and the UK.

  • Where will the energy island be located?
    The island will be constructed off the west coast of Jutland, approximately 100 km west of Thorsminde – right in the middle of some of the North Sea’s best areas to generate offshore wind power.
  • How large will the energy island be? 
    The actual design of the energy island has not yet been decided. The design and construction must take into account long term development opportunities, for example, being able to successfuly manage and distribute wind power from 10 wind farms producing a total of 10 GW, as well as the various new facilities that may subsequently be constructed on the island, such as Power-to-x , energy storage, etc.
  • What will the energy island cost?

    The Danish Energy Agency estimates that it will cost approx. DKK 10 billion to establish the actual island, whereas the system and links to distribute power are estimated to cost approximately DKK 70 billion. In addition, 10 GW offshore wind farms are expected to be constructed at a cost of approximately DKK 130 billion.

    The investment in the energy island has been estimated at a total of DKK 210 billion, including the connected offshore wind farms and infrastructure. The island itself thus only constitutes approximately 5% of the total investment. However, the design will have a great impact on how, and how quickly, the other parts of the energy island can be established.  

    Danish Energy Agency Report 'Cost benefit analysis and climate footprint of energy islands' (in Danish)

  • Who owns the energy island?
    The Danish State will own 50.1 % of the island with a private partner as co-owner of 49.9 %.
  • How much power can the energy island produce?
    The energy island is expected to be extended to a capacity of 10 GW of wind power, equal to the power consumption of approximately 10 million households. The energy island makes it possible to build out offshore wind power as a renewable energy source at an unprecedented scale.
  • Who will be in charge of the energy island infrastructure? 
    Energinet will construct and own the power transmission grid from the energy island to Denmark. Energy from the island is expected to be piped onshore close to 2 large Danish cities, Esbjerg and Holstebro, where there are already extensive connections to the Danish power grid. The power transmission grid from the energy island to other countries will be constructed and owned by Energinet jointly with the relevant operators.
  • How will the energy island be future-proofed?

    The island must be able to adapt to future developments in green energy technologies. The island design must therefore be flexible and be able to evolve in line with new developments.

    Discover our vision for the ‘North Sea Energy Island

  • How will the energy island support innovation?
    In addition to being an innovative concept in itself, the energy island will allow different operators to connect new innovative renewable energy technologies as they mature for offshore use. For example, power-to-x, data centers, or other large consumers of renewable energy.
  • What role will renewable hydrogen play for the energy island?

    Hydrogen is expected to play an important role in the green transformation, for example in the transport sector. The first hydrogen plants based on green power and facilities for production of green fuels, will probably be operational onshore before the energy island is completed.

    Many organisations are studying in detail whether hydrogen production on the island (or possibly directly in the wind turbines) and transport to shore – for example via a hydrogen pipe or in some other way – is economically advantageous. It will depend greatly on the development of the technology in the next 10-15 years, when the renewable hydrogen is to be produced. 

  • When will the energy island be operational?

    At the present time, the energy island is expected to be operational no later than in 2033. At that time, the ambition is that it will have a minimum wind power capacity of 3 GW from surrounding offshore wind farms, with the potential for a further build-out of 10 GW. However, the schedule for the construction of the energy island, coupled with offshore wind power and infrastructure, will depend on the political process

    From vision to reality

    • 2022 to 2023 -Tender process for the energy island in the North Sea 
    • 2023 to 2025 - Feasibility studies and early production 
    • 2025 to 2028 - Construction of North Sea Energy Island
    • 2028 to 2031 - Installation of power transmission grid
    • 2031 to 2033 - Construction of offshore wind farms (3 GW) 
    • 2033 to 2040 - Construction of next phase of offshore wind farms (7 GW) 
  • How will the energy island contribute to Denmark's climate targets?

    The Danish Climate Act (Klimaloven) Denmark has committed to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 70% by 2030, and to become carbon neutral by 2050.

    For each gigawatt of wind power we construct in Denmark, we avoid carbon emissions of around 1.9 million tonnes per year (IEA factor for 2019). The energy island in the North Sea will contribute significantly to meeting this target. 

    Read about Ørsted's extensive experience building offshore wind in the North Sea


  • What impact will the energy island have on the environment? 

    According to an initial study performed by COWI for the Danish Energy Agency, it will be possible to build the energy island and offshore wind turbines in the studied areas of the North Sea without “causing serious and irreparable impacts on nature, the environment and planning conditions”.

    The Danish Energy Agency has initiated detailed studies of the marine environment in the planned area identified for the energy island . This will provide the basis for assessing the impacts of the project on nature and the environment. These studies include observations and samples of seabed animals and plants, marine mammals, birds, fish, and bats. The results of the studies will be published on the Danish Energy Agency's website.

    Discover our sustainability ambitions for the energy island.

The North Sea Energy Island - a hub for innovation and digitalisation

In addition to playing a key role in the future production of renewable energy, the North Sea Energy Island can become a hub for the future digitalisation of Northern Europe and attract large digital investments to Denmark.

  • What does it mean that the energy island can become a digital hub?
    The world is becoming more digital, and both humans and machines are generating data like never before. More devices than ever need to be connected to each other and data moved from a to b. By 2025, the world's data volume will have more than doubled.

    This places great demand on the fibre network that transports our data around the world. The energy island can be a natural hub for a network connecting the countries around the North Sea, and digitally future-proofing the region. At the same time, the island will be a source of renewable energy that can ensure that the large amount of energy required for transport, storage, and consumption of data is based on renewable electricity.
  • What are the benefits of turning the energy island into a digital hub?

    In recent years, the Nordic region has become an attractive hub for data transport, and some of the world's largest technology companies have chosen to locate large data centres in Denmark, due to the presence of large quantities of renewable energy in our electricity grid.

    If the energy island is turned into a digital hub, it will become an attractive location for a global datacentre and help attract large tech investments to Denmark. At the same time, the energy island can become a digital hub for the fibre network that ensure that the region meets the requirements of a digital future.

  • Why is the island attractive for global tech investments?

    Denmark and the Nordic countries are attractive to the world's largest technology companies, especially due to our modern digital infrastructure and high share of renewable energy in the electricity grid.

    On the energy island, tech giants can directly access renewable energy on a large scale and at the same time be connected to a secure high-capacity fibre network that can send data through Northern Europe

  • Who benefits from the fibre connections?

    All future users of the island will benefit from the fibre connections.

    • Wind turbines and electrical infrastructure around the island must be controlled from land. A fast and high-quality connection will ensure optimised control.
    • Both regular users and visitors to the island have access to stable internet, no matter where they are.
    • The digital infrastructure also allows other users such as data centres to set up their business on the island, as they'll have access to the robust high-capacity fibre network on which they rely to transport data around the region, using the energy island as hub.

    In this way, both the energy island and the entire North Sea region will meet the requirements of a digital future.


We want the ‘North Sea Energy Island’ to be more than just an island. We’re creating an island in constant development so that we’ll have unlimited space for innovation.