TenneT is taking the initiative to jointly house management and maintenance services of the offshore infrastructure in a new model. In the coming period, the transmission system operator will share information and ideas with wind farm and oil & gas operators, to gauge their interest in a collaborative model.

A lot of new infrastructure at sea has been realized in recent years. In the coming years, many more wind farms, offshore grid connections and other installations will be developed in the North Sea. By 2031, TenneT expects to have realized 17 offshore grid connections with an installed capacity of more than 21 GW of offshore wind in the Dutch North Sea, all of which will require regular maintenance. Materials, personnel, installations and vessels for maintenance & management are scarce. When parties act together and start sharing these resources, they can be used more efficiently.

Cooperation should lead to greater efficiency, sustainability and safety offshore

The enormous growth in offshore infrastructure development creates a great need for operations and maintenance services. Oil & gas operators have already partly found each other in forms of cooperation. Many wind farm operators still arrange this themselves, or procure these services separately. Resources are becoming increasingly scarce and vessels cannot always be used efficiently. This sometimes results in long waiting times for maintenance. Erik Hiensch, responsible for Operations & Maintenance offshore at TenneT: 'We notice that many parties are facing the same challenges as TenneT, which is why we want to investigate whether we can develop a new cooperation model. As an offshore transmission system operator, we play an important role in the development of offshore infrastructure and want to take the lead in this initiative.'

TenneT expects to achieve greater efficiency by sharing, for example, the deployment of vessels, personnel and materials. This can save money by jointly organizing services on a larger scale, for example. In addition, this can ensure a more sustainable way of organizing work with less impact on the environment and increase safety at sea by being able to perform the same work with fewer vessel movements.