The development of meshed offshore grids: establishing the ''rules of the game''

The development of a cross-border meshed offshore grid requires legal and regulatory certainty. Offshore grid developers need to be able to assess whether their investments will be recovered at an adequate return for the risks involved. As the focus of European regulation so far has been on the cross-border development of point-to-point interconnectors, the development of a cross border offshore grid requires a tailor-made regulatory framework. Such a framework involves a variety of legal, economic and financial elements.

D7.1 deals with the development of a legal framework. In the intermediate report, the primary issues addressed concern the division of legal competences under international law (between states) and under European law (between the EU and its member states) and its applicability. Furthermore, a thorough study of the legal frameworks of eight North Sea states is performed, analysing barriers and best practices. Analysis shows that fundamental questions need to be resolved, for instance regarding the legal classification of offshore assets (which determines the applicable regulatory framework).

D7.3 aims to develop an economic framework for offshore grid planning, e.g. looking at the challenges related to the evaluation of cost and benefits (CBA) of European infrastructure investments. In a later stage, it will also take into account regulatory principles regarding cross border costs allocation (CBCA).

Finally, D7.5 analysed current financial challenges and constraints involved with the development of a meshed offshore grid. It will look for ways to provide more financial flexibility in order to finance these huge investments.

Download Deliverable 7.1: Legal framework and legal barriers to an offshore HVDC electricity grid in the North Sea (PDF 2.7 MB)

Download Deliverable 7.3: Economic framework for offshore grid planning (PDF 2.8 MB)

Download Deliverable 7.5: Financing framework for meshed offshore grid investments (PDF 1.2 MB)