The rising cost of energy, mainly natural gas and electricity, has prompted the search for new solutions. And what Keynes said has happened: the inevitable never happens; only the unexpected does. Northern Europe could become a major producer of electricity through offshore windmills.
They do not have the insolation of the Iberian Peninsula, but the North Sea has gusts of wind capable of clustering "wind farms" and generating almost a gigawatt of electricity, i.e., what a medium-sized nuclear power plant produces.
These are not the windmills we see on the plateau. They are gigantic turbo generators with huge blades, located kilometers offshore and are so heavy that they must have a rotation every 20 minutes so that the windmill does not succumb under its own weight.
The windmills are anchored in the sea and Denmark, with a population close to that of Catalonia, has two thirds of the windmills installed in Europe and generates enough electricity to meet the demand of 40 million homes in Europe. Six countries that are committed to wind energy have been grouped together: Germany, Denmark, the Netherlands, Sweden, Norway and Great Britain. Because of economies of scale and advancing technologies, costs are falling and Britain is getting electricity at 44 euros per megawatt, one-sixth of the wholesale price.
The wind blows at speeds of ten meters per second and the power it generates is hard to imagine. On the Costa Brava, even with a strong Llevant, windmill farms capable of producing Denmark's levels are not imaginable.
From the port of Barcelona and by underwater pipelines we will transport green hydrogen to Marseille and from the powerful subway pipeline network that France has, the cleaner fuel will reach Rotterdam, Hamburg and Austria. But it is a more expensive project than the large offshore windmills. And again in Denmark and Sweden, the high electricity generation from the windmills makes it possible to produce green hydrogen cheaper and more accessible to industrial countries.
In Spain, the Council of Ministers on February 28 approved five zones for the development of offshore wind energy. They are the North Atlantic (off Galicia); the South Atlantic; the Strait of Gibraltar and Alboran Sea; the Levantine and Balearic Islands and the Canary Islands. Where is Catalonia? In the Levantine, but located in the north of the Costa Brava, in the middle of the tourism and fishing area. But except for Galicia, the others do not have gusts of wind like those of the North Sea and it is very possible that there will be a rejection in the areas that depend on tourism and fishing.