General – Environmental Permit
Vincent Van Quickenborne, the Belgian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Justice and the North Sea, has officially approved an environmental permit for the Princess Elisabeth Island project.
Construction of the world’s first energy island, which will be located 45 km off the Belgian coast in the Princess Elisabeth Zone, will begin in early 2024.
A consortium comprising Belgian marine construction companies DEME and Jan De Nul has already started preparing the site where it will build the caissons (concrete foundations) in Vlissingen (North Sea Port).
In the meantime, Elia is putting the final touches on a nature-inclusive design for the island that will be submitted later this year. Together with outside experts, the design was examined to determine which items could be adjusted or added with a view to boosting biodiversity on and around the island.
Princess Elisabeth Island will be an energy hub 45 km off the coast connecting new wind farms and additional interconnectors (to the UK and Denmark) to Belgium’s onshore power grid.