A world’s first for sustainable multifunctional use of space on North Sea 

Scheveningen, The NetherlandsDecember 3, 2020 – Today Oceans of Energy and The Seaweed Company announce that they have installed offshore solar & seaweed farms at the North Sea Farmers Test Site, 12 kilometers off the shore of ScheveningenThe offshore solar & seaweed farms make use of the same space at sea to both produce solar energy and farm seaweed. By doing this, they set the example for the future use of space between offshore wind turbines off the coast of the Netherlands.  

After a year of successful operation on the North Sea with the first offshore solar system, it is very special that we have now accomplished to generate clean energy as well as produce food at sea, because both are important necessities of life, says Allard van Hoeken, CEO and Founder of Oceans of Energy. Joost Wouters, CEO and Founder of The Seaweed Company continues: “It makes me proud that this project shows that we can use the space between wind turbines at sea to its full extent for the cultivation of valuable seaweed.” 

Allard van Hoeken (left) and Joost Wouters (right)

The offshore solar & seaweed farms are part of the European H2020United project, that is meant for stimulating sustainable and multi-use offshore systems within the European Union. The Solar at Sea project is supported by the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (in Dutch: Rijksdienst voor Ondernemend Nederland, RVO), through the Energy Topsector of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate and European regional development projects (INTERREG) ENCORE & OceanDemo.  

The Seaweed Company active in Dutch waters for the first time 

Seaweed has lots of valuable applications in food for humans, animals and plants, but can also serve as basis for materials, bioplastics and energy. To facilitate those applications The Seaweed Company has multiple seaweed farms abroad. In the Netherlands, the future of large-scale seaweed production lies at offshore wind parks, this is the first time that seaweed is produced at this scale in the Dutch North Sea. For this offshore production of seaweed, the Cultivator was developed in collaboration with several Dutch partners. This is a seaworthy cultivation system that is expected to produce 15000 kg of seaweed and take up 1.8 tonnes of CO2.  

Oceans of Energy’s solar panels now at two sites on the Dutch North Sea  
One year ago, the first offshore solar farm in the world was installed successfully by Oceans of Energy on the Dutch North Sea. At the first site, the system has produced clean energy for a year, weathered the sea climate, endured waves up to 4 meters and survived the storms Ciara and Dennis in the winter of 2019.  The system has been designed and built to endure waves of 13 meters at this second site, which is further offshore on the North Sea. The system is ready for the realization of combined offshore solar and wind projects, creating 100 to 5.000 MW of offshore solar energy per project. By using only 5% of the Dutch North Sea, half of the energy demand of the Netherlands can be generated. This can be accomplished by using the space between wind turbines.   

About The Seaweed Company   
The Seaweed Company was founded in 2018 and focuses on the development of high-quality products for humans, animals and plants, and on the production of tracable seaweed on a commercial scale. The Seaweed Company has its own production facilities in Ireland, Morocco, India and the Netherlands. The Seaweed Company has developed products that contribute to sustainable agriculture and farming. Next to that, The Seaweed Company is actively involved in innovative research on the applications in the medical sector (Alzheimer and diabetes), functional foods and materials (natural composites). For more information: www.theseaweedcompany.com   

About Oceans of Energy   
Oceans of Energy is a Dutch company specializing in offshore solar energy, and the associated mooring technologies and environmental impact research. The company was founded in 2016 and since then, has expanded to 20 employees. The company has raised EUR 5 million of funding and aims for a next investment round in 2021 for scaling up the production and projects.  

About North Sea Farmers 
North Sea Farmers is a community of approximately 100 companies including The Seaweed Company and Oceans of Energy. Together we work on positive climate impact, by building a sustainable seaweed sector. In this way, we contribute to greater biodiversity, CO2 reduction and a circular economy. Within the project, North Sea Farmers fulfills the role of project lead, ensuring the coordination of preparations and operations on the offshore test site and compliance with all applicable laws and regulations. 


Contact details:  

Oceans of Energy   
Ariane van Hoeken   
+31 6 48 65 09 37   

The Seaweed Company   
Joost Wouters   
+31 6 41 21 45 69  

North Sea Farmers   
Femke Prins   
+31 6 411 45 470