Public planning procedure starts for the “Exclusive Economic Zone” section of DolWin4
Amprion Offshore GmbH has started the planning approval procedure for DolWin4 in the Exclusive Economic Zone of the North Sea. This is based on the completeness certification of the planning approval documents by the Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency.
Amprion connects wind farms in the North Sea to the transmission grid with the offshore grid connection system DolWin4. The wind farms are located in the so-called Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and are therefore under the responsibility of the Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency (BSH). In March 2021 Amprion submitted the approval documents to the authority in order to check them for completeness. The subjects of the documents are the DolWin delta converter platform and the approximately 26-kilometre-long sea cable system in the EEZ. A special focus is on the compatibility of the project with the safety of shipping and air traffic as well as the protection of the marine environment. The issuance of the certificate of completeness started the planning approval procedure and with it the formal participation of the public as well as the authorities and other public agencies. Amprion had already received the planning approval for the coastal water section, located in the South of the EEZ, at the beginning of the year.
Multistage approval procedure subsequently
Amprion expects to receive feedback from the participation procedure in the middle of 2022. The BSH will then examine the feedback and weigh up the interests. The aim is to issue the planning approval. The special feature in the EEZ: The decision has to pass through an enforcement procedure with a multistage approval process. Amprion has to consider the incidental provisions of the planning approval decision in the technical implementation and provide evidence of this. Project manager Jan Wiemer is satisfied: "The start of the planning procedure for DolWin4 is an important milestone for us. As we have submitted the documents for DolWin4 together with those for BorWin4, we expect the procedure to start this year as well. So our first offshore projects are on the right track." The first construction work of DolWin4 in the EEZ area is expected to start in 2025.
The offshore grid connection systems DolWin4 and BorWin4
The largely parallel running offshore grid connection systems DolWin4 and BorWin4 are among the most important energy transition projects in Germany. They are scheduled to go into operation in 2028 and 2029. Starting at the wind farms located in the North Sea, the cables initially run 60 and 125 kilometres at sea. They cross below the island of Norderney and reach the coast in Hilgenriedersiel. From there, they run for around 155 kilometres as underground cables towards the Hanekenfähr substation in Lingen (Ems), where Amprion will connect them to its transmission network.