The world’s first energy islands are becoming a reality in Denmark

Early this morning, the vast majority of political parties in the Danish Parliament came together around an ambitious climate and energy plan. The climate and energy plan plays an important role in fulfilling Denmark’s target for reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 70% by 2030. The world’s first energy islands form an integral part of the climate and energy plan.

The largest of the new energy islands is going to be an artificial island in the Danish North Sea. The island is going to be established by 2030 at the latest with 3 GW offshore wind connected through the island. In time, the island will connect 10 GW offshore wind and host electricity storage and power-to-X as well as housing, O&M facilities and HVDC converters for transmission and interconnectors.

A consortium including three of the largest Danish pension and energy companies is ready to finance and operate the energy island in the North Sea. PensionDanmark, PFA and SEAS-NVE are ready to finance the energy island – initially with up to EUR 50 million to develop the project. Together, the partners form a very strong consortium, which is known for long-term, sustainable ownership, focusing on customers, members and owners. Between them, the consortium partners have substantial expertise in finance. Thus, the government’s ambition for an energy island in the North Sea can be financed entirely without government funding.

“The energy island in the North Sea is a very visionary project which will play an important role in the economically sound expansion of offshore wind capacity. At the same time, developing and constructing the island will create many new Danish jobs that will help the Danish economy in recovering from the effects of COVID-19. It is therefore our hope as investors that the process going forward will be fast and inclusive, making it possible for industrial players to mitigate the risk associated with such a huge infrastructure project,” says Torben Möger Pedersen, CEO of PensionDanmark.

The partners see the state’s ambition of an energy island as very visionary and value-adding for Danish off-shore technology. Design and construction of the energy island is a large and demanding project, but can be implemented with existing technology.

“Denmark is a pioneer in driving the green transition, and today’s political agreement underlines this. A wind island in the North Sea will add even more momentum to the green transition, and the concept has global potential. That is why we at PFA are ready, together with the partners in the consortium, to lift this historic project and thereby ensure that PFA’s 1.3 million customers’ savings are put to good work in the best possible service,” says Kasper Ahrndt Lorenzen, Group CIO of PFA Pension.

The energy island will be developed in stages in line with increasing Danish electricity demand, the development of electricity storage technology or, for example, Power-to-X, as well as the connection of the island to other countries around the North Sea.

In the future, society’s energy supply must be covered to a greater extent by renewable energy if we are to succeed with the green transition. SEAS-NVE has a long tradition of taking considerable responsibility for developing the Danish energy system. A development that is driven by strong professional insight. Among other things, this is the knowledge we will bring into play in connection with the energy island. Most recently, we have specific experience from energy storage experiments,” says Jesper Hjulmand, CEO, SEAS-NVE.

The partners are assisted by Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners, one of the world’s leading green infrastructure investment companies with significant experience from major offshore projects worldwide.

Contact information

PensionDanmark

Ulrikke Ekelund, Head of Communication and Media, telephone +45 2019 9238, uek@pension.dk

PFA

Kristian Lund Pedersen, Head of External Communications and Chief Press Officer, telephone +45 6122 2231, klp@pfa.dk

SEAS-NVE

Morten Kidal, Chief Press Officer, telephone +45 2170 3799, mkl@seas-nve.dk

About Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners

Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners P/S (CIP) is a fund management company focused on energy infrastructure including offshore wind, onshore wind, solar PV, biomass and energy-from-waste, transmission and distribution, and other energy assets like reserve capacity and storage. CIP has approximately 110 employees and offices in Copenhagen, Taipei, New York, Tokyo, Utrecht, and London.

CIP manages six funds and has more than EUR 8 bn under management. CI I, CI A I and CI A II have PensionDanmark as founding- and sole investor. CI II has 19 Danish and international institutional investors and CI III has 42 institutional investors from the Nordics, Continental Europe, the UK, Israel, Asia, Australia, and multi-lateral organizations e.g. EIB. CI NMF I has 15 investors from the Nordics and Continental Europe.

CIP was founded in 2012 by senior executives from the energy industry in cooperation with Pension Denmark.