Municipalities in Skåne should allow wind power in their sea waters
Sweden's electricity consumption is expected to increase rapidly. Electrification means more jobs and a reduced climate impact. Therefore, it is urgent to get new wind power in place. It is planned for many wind farms within the sea waters of Swedish municipalities (Sweden's lake territory), which extends roughly 20 km out to sea. The projects can be built and start producing electricity relatively quickly, if only the necessary permits are granted. There are several good reasons for the municipalities concerned to say yes:
1. It strengthens business. With increased electricity production, the industries of the future can emerge around the county and throughout Sweden.
2. It reduces greenhouse gas emissions. Each new offshore wind turbine (60 GWh) can reduce emissions by approximately 36,000 tonnes, equivalent to the emissions from 21,000 cars.
3. It increases security. Municipalities that say yes to offshore wind power make it easier for the Swedish Armed Forces, who do not have to adapt their planning for wind power to municipal vetoes.
4. It reduces dependence on fossil fuels from Russia. For every kWh of clean electricity that replaces imports of fossil fuels, the money for the state budgets of Russia and other dictatorships decreases.
5. It lowers the electricity bill. Electricity prices in southern Sweden last fall could have been 35-50 percent lower if there had been offshore wind farms (3.5 GW) in this part of the country.
6. Public support. Those who want their own municipality to contribute to expanded wind power are twice as many as the opponents, according to an opinion poll.
The most common argument against wind power in the lake territory is "build the wind power further out where it is not visible". But offshore wind power is also required in the lake territory because it is much faster to get it in place and we don't have time to wait. Sweden's electricity production must increase significantly faster than previously assumed, for Sweden to cope with electrification and the needs of industry, pressure the price of electricity and deal with the climate crisis.
At the same time, offshore wind power benefits the municipality and local communities, for example in terms of support from wind power developers to local organizations, new jobs, tax revenues and the possibility of attracting electricity-intensive industry to the municipality.
In addition, there is an ongoing investigation into financial incentives for the municipalities for wind power expansion, on land and in Sweden's maritime territory. The state should, at least, transfer the property tax from the wind turbines to the municipalities. That would give the municipality several million Krones a year.
We and many others are ready to make large investments in offshore wind power to be able to supply industry and consumers with renewable electricity at attractive prices as soon as possible. The only thing that is required is that the relevant municipalities approve the expansion and that we get a permit. Jeanette Lindeblad, CEO Wind Sweden
Magnus Jiborn, CEO Kustvind
Per Witalisson, CEO Eolus
Published in Trelleborgs Allehanda 2022-08-23