BRUSSELS, October 9 /PRNewswire/ -- On 4 December, over 1000 representatives of the offshore wind industry, policy makers and energy specialists will gather to explore and discuss the future of offshore wind energy during a three-day pan-European conference dedicated specifically to this promising technology. Organised by the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA), the European Offshore Wind Conference and Exhibition (EOW2007) will debate the future of offshore development in Europe and address the barriers preventing one of Europe's largest indigenous resources from being exploited to its full potential.

Europe needs to exploit its vast offshore wind resource in order to achieve the 20% renewable energy target adopted by the Heads of State last March. Up until now, wind energy development has been mainly onshore. At the end of 2006, offshore wind farm installations represented 1.8% of total installed wind power capacity, generating 3.3% of Europe's wind power.

Sigmar Gabriel, German Environment Minister welcomes the decision to hold the event in Berlin stating that "Germany is the global leader in the development of onshore wind energy. Over the coming years we want to continue this development offshore."

Confirmed speaker, Swedish Minister of Enterprise and Energy, Maud Olofsson, also sees, "A big need to develop offshore technology in a way that best leverages its potential as a large-scale, cost-effective energy source." The Danish Transport and Energy Minister, Jakob Axel Nielsen, "warmly supports the initiative," and is "Delighted to give a speech at the opening session of the European Offshore Wind conference in Berlin."

As an emerging industry, offshore wind energy has distinctive industrial and political development requirements. At EOW2007 the industry vision, the political requirements needed, R&D and technical barriers will be the main topics of discussion.

The EOW2007 Conference programme consists of 22 separate sessions with presentations from over 100 leading experts and decision makers. Additionally, over 100 poster presentations will be showcased. In parallel with the conference sessions, there will be an exhibition with over 60 of the leading companies involved in offshore wind energy. EOW2007 is the ideal place to examine the technologies, hardware and services that keep the offshore business moving.

A press conference will take place on 4 December at 12.00, right after the opening session.

A press conference will take place on 4 December at 12.00, right after the opening session.

When: 4-6 December 2007 Where: Estrel Convention Centre, Berlin, Germany Who: Organisers: European Wind Energy Association (EWEA)

EWEA is the voice of the wind industry, actively promoting the utilisation of wind power in Europe and worldwide. It now has over 350 members from 40 countries including manufacturers with a 98% share of the world wind power market, plus component suppliers, research institutes, contractors, national wind and renewables associations, developers, electricity providers, finance and insurance companies and consultants. This combined strength makes EWEA the world's largest and most powerful wind energy network.

More: A press conference will take place on 4 December at 12.00, right after the opening session.

A press room will be provided for journalists with computers, as well as catering, background information and press packs covering the main topics of the conference.

For more information about the programme and registration form (free access to accredited press): http://www.eow2007.info/

For more information please contact Isabelle Valentiny tel. +32-2-400-10-55, communication@ewea.org