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EU wants 5 times more offshore wind power in next 10 yrs

DPA
Brussels
The European Commission wants to see the bloc increase the amount of offshore wind energy it produces by a factor of five in the next 10 years, part of its push to reach net emissions neutrality by 2050.
“We as Europeans have a huge advantage,” the EU executive branch’s vice president, Frans Timmermans, said on Thursday, pointing to the advanced technology and production capacities of the European Union.
The new plan foresees investment of 800 billion euros (947 billion dollars) by 2050 to make use of Europe’s sea basins - the North Sea, the Baltic, the Mediterranean, the Atlantic and around the EU’s islands - and reduce dependence on fossil fuels.
By 2050, the EU should produce 25 times more offshore wind energy, but also use more offshore floating solar panels as well as wave and tidal power under the strategy.
The commission believes the pivot would foster “economic growth and job creation in all parts of the renewable energy supply chain,” according to a press release, helping the EU get back on its feet after the coronavirus crisis-induced recession.
The European Environmental Bureau - a major network of EU organizations - welcomed the shift to renewables in a press release on Thursday, but raised concerns about “potentially negative impact on marine habitats.” Especially wind turbines anchored in the seabed - as opposed to floating - “can potentially lead to the loss of many sea mammals, birds and fish, which are very sensitive to noise and rely on their senses to search for food and follow migratory routes,” the statement continued.

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