December 14 - In what could be a significant boost to heavy lift operators servicing the offshore wind energy sector, nine European countries have signed up to an agreement to develop Europe's first offshore wind grid.

At the Energy Council meeting in Brussels, ministers from Germany, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Denmark, Sweden, the UK and Ireland signed the agreement, agreeing to develop an integrated offshore grid in the North and Irish Seas.

The thinking behind the agreement is that a grid spanning European waters should ensure the security of electricity supplies for the participants by helping to optimise the production of electricity generated from offshore wind power. It will also act as a boost to achieve the EU's renewable energy objectives.