Posters - WindEurope Annual Event 2024

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Come meet the poster presenters to ask them questions and discuss their work

We would like to invite you to come and see the posters at our upcoming conference. The posters will showcase a diverse range of research topics, and will give delegates an opportunity to engage with the authors and learn more about their work. Whether you are a seasoned researcher or simply curious about the latest developments in your field, we believe that the posters will offer something of interest to everyone. So please join us at the conference and take advantage of this opportunity to learn and engage with your peers in the academic community. We look forward to seeing you there!

PO281: Conditions for nature friendly and circular decommissioning

Marjolein Kelder, Senior Project Manager Offshore Wind & The Rich North Sea Program, Natuur & Milieu


While the spotlight has been primarily on new windfarm deployments, the decommissioning offshore windfarms (OWFs) at the end of their lifecycle has been relatively overlooked. What are the environmental challenges of OWF decommissioning options? These challenges encompass not only the absence of practical decommissioning experience but also the potential impact on biodiversity and needs regarding circularity. Additionally, the legal framework lacks clarity on whether alternatives to full decommissioning are allowed. The current regulatory framework mandates the complete removal of all structures post-operation phase, restoring the seabed to its "original" state. However, this overlooks the potential impact on biodiversity, created ecological value and ecosystem health. The challenge is to strike a balance between decommissioning and meeting restoration and circularity targets. As such, decommissioning must be incorporated into project design, ensuring ease of disassembly and minimal ecological disruption while maximising critical material recovery. By working together with industry we try to learn from oil and gas decommissioning and explore the possibility for alternative decommissioning options. Thereby balancing the energy- and nature transitions. The intention is to initiate discussions that drive the development of a decision-making framework for decommissioning offshore wind infrastructure while prioritizing nature considerations. Collaboration with stakeholders, including offshore wind farm developers, ecologists, and scientists, will be pivotal in crafting this framework. Moreover, key design principles that positively influence nature inclusivity, lifespan, and circularity will be presented to guide future designs for offshore wind farms. As the offshore wind sector scales up, informed decisions on decommissioning must be made, particularly during the design phase of new projects. This presentation centres on guidelines to mitigate the impacts of decommissioning on biodiversity and circularity that need to be incorporated in the design phase for future offshore wind farms.

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