The Swedish government announced in October that electricity system operator Svenska Kraftnät would be tasked with expanding the transmission grid in offshore areas in connection with plans to develop offshore wind power. National fishermen were concerned about the announcements. They have issued a letter to the government on this issue.

The Swedish Fish Producers Organisation (se. Sveriges Fiskares Producentorganisation, SFPO) is the largest organisation for professional fishermen in Sweden. Represents primarily bottom fishing pros that use bottom trawling. Members of the association fish for species such as shrimp, lobster, cod, haddock, saithe, plaice and others. On 18 September, the fishermen addressed a letter to the Minister of Energy and Digitalisation, Anders Ygman, and the Minister of Environment and Climate, Per Bolund.

– We have nothing against offshore wind farms, but we are very concerned that their location will limit our ability to supply consumers with fish caught in Sweden, which is in high demand. There is concern about the likely loss of many important fisheries, point out Peter Ronelöv Olsson, SFPO representative, and Fredrik Lindberg, spokesman of the organization.

The trade organisation points out that the Swedish professional fishery was not mentioned once during the government’s press conference.

“The fishing industry has long been active in places where RES developers want to install offshore wind farms. Our concerns are justified because there are no specific areas designated for offshore wind”, they add

They argue that the coexistence of industries at sea should be pursued. No one certainly knows what the long-term effects of large-scale offshore wind farms will be. “It is reminiscent of the great biological experiment with the marine environment, the experiment in the Baltic Sea”, the letter reads.

Fishermen expect clarification after decision on marine plans. They hope that prime fishing grounds that are of national importance to commercial fisheries will not be considered for development of any offshore wind farms.

We have reported on BalticWind.EU that the Swedish government is planning to commission electricity system operator Svenska Kraftnät to expand the transmission grid in the country’s offshore areas. The development of offshore wind power will support Sweden’s efforts to meet its 2040 RES energy production targets. The operator will be tasked with, among other things, examining whether there is a need for new guidelines for offshore developers.