Can offshore wind and commercial fishing coexist?

We work closely with the fishing industry when planning, building and operating our wind farms, ensuring peaceful coexistence.


Do wind farms harm stocks, get in the way of fishing activities or cause economic and environmental damage?


Offshore wind already coexists successfully with maritime and fishing industries, with close collaboration throughout development, construction and operation.


Working closely with maritime industries

When the ocean is your source of income or the place you fish recreationally, the arrival of an offshore wind farm can cause understandable concern.

As an offshore wind developer, we understand the cultural and economic importance of fishing grounds. Our Marine Affairs team works closely with commercial and recreational fishing communities throughout the process of developing, building and operating our offshore wind farms.

In addition to undertaking environmental assessments when deciding where to locate a new wind farm, we also address the questions, comments and concerns of local fishing communities. This input gathered by our fisheries liaisons helps inform how we proceed when developing a wind farm.

Learn more about how we engage with maritime users

A fishing boat and fish pass by offshore wind turbines, showing how offshore wind can coexist with commercial fishing.

Safe navigation

It may not be obvious from a distance, but the wind turbines in an offshore wind farm are spaced widely in a grid pattern, with two distinct lines of orientation. The wind turbines are lit and marked in accordance with guidance from the U.S. Coast Guard, and their position is reflected accurately on nautical charts.

All this allows mariners to navigate and fish within the wind farms, except in discreet areas that will be restricted during the construction phase of the project.

We provide regular updates about our maritime activities through our twice-weekly mariners’ briefings. These are currently available on our website, and can soon also be accessed on iPhone and Android apps.

Read the latest mariners’ briefings

Ørsted's biodiversity commitment
We are commited to ensure that every new project from 2030 has a net positive impact on biodiversity.

Protecting biodiversity

As for the fish and other sea creatures that live on our wind farms – and on which fisheries rely for their income – these, too, can coexist happily with offshore wind, thanks in no small part to the expertise of our own team of environmental specialists.

During construction, we actively minimize environmental impacts, for example through using bubble curtains, noise mitigation screens, hydro sound dampers and suction bucket jackets to reduce noise. And once built, turbine foundations act as artificial reefs where new diverse habitats can grow.

Throughout a wind farm’s life, we closely monitor and mitigate any possible impacts on the marine environment, especially on commercially important species and habitats. This has included groundbreaking research into crustacean stocks on one of our wind farms in the UK. This research showed no negative impact from offshore wind activities.


A bird resting on a tree branch facing offshore wind turbines shows how seabirds can coexist safely with offshore wind.
Do wind turbines hurt birds?
Of all human activity, wind turbines pose only a tiny danger to birdlife. Far greater is climate change, which threatens many species with extinction.
Illustration of wind turbine blades on shore and an offshore wind turbine at sea shows how turbines can be recycled.
Can wind turbines be recycled?
When wind turbines eventually reach the end of their lifespan, we recycle 85 to 95% of what they’re made of.
An offshore wind turbine by an onshore factory emitting carbon represent the limited carbon footprint of offshore wind.
What is the carbon footprint of offshore wind?
Emissions from building turbines are vastly outweighed by those saved through generating clean power.
Offshore wind turbines juxtaposed with homes on shore represent the limited impact of offshore wind on property values.
Do wind farms impact property value?
Studies reveal that offshore wind has little to no influence on property prices.
Several offshore wind turbines juxtaposed with onshore energy sources, showing the reliability of offshore wind energy.
Is offshore wind power reliable?
Offshore wind is a highly reliable energy source. Wind turbines are able to generate clean energy out at sea, even when it seems calm from the shore.
Offshore wind turbines overlooking beach towels and umbrellas represent the limited impact of offshore wind on tourism.
Do offshore wind farms harm tourism?
Offshore wind has only recently arrived in the U.S. But from what we know so far, there is no reason to fear that it puts tourists off visiting the ocean.
Close-up of an Ørsted offshore wind turbine, explaining how to reliably transform offshore wind into clean electricity.
What is offshore wind power?

Offshore wind power explained

How we capture the power of the wind at sea to produce clean, reliable electricity