In general, Belgium’s renewable energy policy is aligned with the EU 2020 targets. Belgium’s land-based and offshore wind energy developments are essential for both the Belgian and European targets for energy development from renewable sources. For 2020, Belgium has a binding national target for renewable energy equal to 13% of the gross final consumption of energy.
By 2020, the total land-based installed capacity in Belgium should reach 3,000 MW, and an additional 2,292 MW are planned offshore for a possible total of 5,292 MW of wind power. Offshore wind alone will account for 10% of the electricity demand and 8.5 TWh of electricity by 2020.
Progress & Operational Details
Offshore wind-generated electricity first began in 2009 and progressed rapidly to a total of 877 MW in 2017. The Belgian government is working quickly to reach the 2020 targets, although some social acceptance problems with a land-based connection caused delays in 2015 and 2016. This matter was resolved, and offshore installation is expected to increase in 2017.
Land-based wind capacity remained low until 2004, when the installed capacity and production started to double year after year from 96 MW in 2004 to 1,966 MW in 2017. Land-based wind is on track to reach its 2020 objectives after much progress during the last few years.
National RDD Priorities and Budget
The Belgian government invested 2.728 million EUR (3.273 million USD) in offshore and land-based wind in 2017. Several key technologies that Belgium wants to invest in for the future have been put forward via the Steering Group of the SET-Plan. With some research projects, like GREDOR or SmartWater in the Walloon Region, Belgium is developing services that will ease the future integration of a larger share of wind energy by modernizing the electric grid and offering capacity for clearly tailored storage.