Germany has issued permits so far for 25 wind farms in its offshore seas, with nearly 1,800 wind turbines to be erected on stone foundations in shallow waters, a senior marine official said Monday.
The data was released in Hamburg by Christian Dahmke of the Federal Agency for Marine Transport and Hydrography BSH, which approves the plans after checking that the turbines will not obstruct shipping.
The first farm, code-named Alpha Ventus, is already being built.
Of the permits, 22 are for the North Sea and three for the Baltic.
Dahmke said a total of 55 applications had been filed by electricity companies and investors.
German Transport Minister Wolfgang Tiefensee forecast that the ultimate number of approvals would be 40 wind farms, which he said would create 30,000 new jobs in the region.
That many could generate 12,000 megawatts of electricity, enough for 12 million homes, he told the newspaper Hamburger Abendblatt.
He said he would seek cabinet approval Wednesday for regulations on the new zones.
The aim was to install 25,000 megawatts of capacity by the year 2030. The newspaper published a map of the seven preferred sites, all at places in Germany’s exclusive economic zone, outside the 12-mile territorial zone.
The German plans to build wind farms offshore, each consisting of dozens of turbines, lagged for more than a decade because of engineering problems, fears that they would become a danger and investor caution. Denmark is much further ahead in building turbines at sea.
Coastal communities also fear the turning rotors could be an eyesore.
“The most important issue is that they not be visible from land,” said Petra Reiber, mayor of the North Sea holiday island of Sylt.
“Vacationers come here to enjoy the horizon. If they can see wind turbines, we’ll have a tourism problem.”