The signing of the land treaty is of regional importance for the transition to renewable energy. The realization will mean the world’s first wind turbines on a sea dike and a next step in innovation of the water and wind industry.

Innovative cooperation

Eisse Luitjens, daily board member of the Noorderzijlvest water board: "Since 2011, it has been considered whether wind turbines can be safely placed on a sea dike. At Noorderzijlvest we put our neck on the line in 2011, to cooperatively investigate the possibilities of the extraordinary project for the first wind turbines on the seaside with innogy. At that time it was completely unimaginable that wind turbines were put on the dike, because of a lack of necessary knowledge and experience to make a safe design."

Study object

At the request of innogy, Noorderzijlvest has provided the Oostpolder dike as a study object. A responsible design for wind turbines naturally matches the main function of the sea dike: protecting against floods. With the specific features of this dike, innogy has investigated under what conditions a wind turbine can be realized on the seaside. This research into the possibilities was later linked with the improvement of the sea dike between Eemshaven and Delfzijl.

Safe placement of wind turbines on sea dike
In 2014, the water board has tested the concept submitted by innogy for feasibility at the Expertise Network Watersafety (ENW). This knowledge network of specialists in water safety concluded that it is possible to place wind turbines in a responsible manner on a sea dike.

The Netherlands confirms role as world leader in wind and water management

Jan Boorsma, Director of innogy wind Netherlands: "Wind energy is an indispensable source in the transition to a fully sustainable energy supply. Sea dikes are attractive locations, due to the good and strong wind conditions. It's almost always blowing. We are proud of our cooperation with the Noorderzijlvest water board. By combining expertise to put wind turbines on primary dikes, we reconfirm our world leading position in wind and water management."

Further research

On the basis of the ENW advice, Noorderzijlvest gave innogy a green light to further investigate the actual realization. This is done in close agreement with the design of the new Oostpolder dike. The wind turbines are expected to be built and to operate in 2019. The plans for the wind turbines on the Oostpolder dike provide a contribution to the nationally agreed 6,000 MW wind on land.