Win-Wind: making offshore wind farms winning for society

Publieke samenvatting / Public summary

With the rapid upscaling of wind farms on the North Sea, pressures are mounting on other users, such as fisheries. Successful growth of offshore wind farm (OWF) development and exploitation requires integration in the environment, in terms of ecology and multi-use. This poses an innovation challenge for multiple parties. OWF operators need to know that there are minimal risks involved in multi-use. Spatial design of OWFs might need to be adapted. Fisheries need knowledge on new species and innovation on catch methods. All stakeholders have an interest in a strong and resilient North Sea ecosystem. The challenge is to design for ‘integration’ and multiple value creation, not just for optimization. Currently, relations between the offshore wind and fishery sector are very fragile, which poses a collaboration challenge. It is key to design a process in which all parties are heard and can co-design.
We envisage a long-term program of multi-use in OWFs. The current proposal represents phase 1 “Preconditions for a demonstration pilot”. Subsequent future phases comprise phase 2 “implementation pilot” and phase 3 “business implementation and upscaling”.

This project aims to research and demonstrate the possibilities for co-use of OWFs, through a pilot project with low-impact passive lobster and brown crab fisheries. We create a framework to facilitate dialogue and collaboration between OWF operators, fisheries stakeholders, government and other relevant actors. We test the generic framework to support the societal transition towards offshore multi-use.
Through desk and field studies and cooperation with the relevant stakeholders we provide concrete answers, handling perspectives and solutions to ecological, economic and technological feasibility questions. Our proposal represents phase 1 “Preconditions for a demonstration pilot”. The two envisaged, subsequent future phases will comprise phase 2 “Implementation pilot” and phase 3 “Business implementation and upscaling”. The project contributes to conflict mitigation between and commitment of OWF operators and the fisheries sector, clear insights on the necessary design principles to reduce risks for future co-use of OWFs, and thus to more efficient upscaling of OWF multi-use in the period after 2023 in combination with other emerging Blue Growth activities.

Short description of activities
The project ‘Win-Wind’ aims to research and demonstrate the possibilities for co-use of offshore windfarms, through a pilot project with passive low-impact fisheries in casu lobster and brown crab fisheries. This pilot yields insights in ecological and economic implications. It will show how to create a framework for multi-use of wind farms and how to support the transition of the fishery sector. Participating: Stichting Wageningen Research (Marine: WMR, Economic: WEcR), Vissen voor de Wind project members fishing companies Cramer Noordwijk Beheer BV, Noordzee Charters (Arjan Korving), Rederij W. van der Zwan & Zn BV.

1. Collaboration: we stimulate trust-building and collaboration with and between OWF operators and fisheries companies (e.g. resolving the conflict of interest on OWF to be used).
2. Ecology
    a. Insight in ecology of lobsters and crabs in the North Sea and around Dutch OWFs in particular.
    b. Insight in harvest potential and potential stock enhancement strategies.
    c. Insight in environmental impacts of passive fisheries in OWFs.
3. Economy
    a. Insight in market potential of North Sea lobster and crab.
    b. Feasibility for labelling of “Win-Wind products”.
4. Reduction of technical risks
    a. Design of low-risk techniques to fish lobster and crab in OWFs (with respect to fishing gear, anchoring, handling).
    b. Optimized fisheries techniques to improve yield.
5. Transition process
    a. Ready-to-use transition framework to apply in future offshore multi-use initiatives.
    b. Collaboration and mutual acceptance of the multi-use idea of the relevant stakeholders/sectors: OWF operator, fisheries,
    government, producers/consumers etc.