Go-ahead for offshore wind farm sites

A A A

Expansions to offshore wind farm sites around the English coast which will provide enough power for an extra 1.4 million homes were given the green light today by the Crown Estate.

Five wind farm developments, off the coasts of Suffolk, Kent, Cumbria and in Liverpool Bay were given the go-ahead to extend their area, creating an extra 1.7 gigawatts (GW) of power.



All the area extensions will be subject to a full, new planning application, environmental impact assessment and consultation before construction can begin, the Crown Estate said.



And two projects off the coast of Norfolk have been given the go-ahead to install extra capacity to harness more wind energy within their designated offshore area.



In total the extensions permitted by the Crown Estate will provide an additional 2GW of power to the grid.



It is hoped the developments will add to England's energy security and provide jobs and a stable flow of construction projects for the supply chain before the massive "Round 3" expansion of offshore wind kicks in.



Rob Hastings, the Crown Estate's director of the marine estate, said the extra 2GW of power had been driven by "developers' appetite" for offshore wind.



He said: "It is another positive step in the maturing of the offshore wind industry and will significantly support the growth of the supply chain as it adds further to the pipeline of construction projects.



"This announcement shows the Crown Estate's commitment to help develop this maturing sector with a view to driving the UK offshore wind energy industry forward and creating a long-term sustainable energy source for the UK."



RWE Npower Renewables welcomed the green light to develop another wind farm with SSE Renewables next to their Outer Gabbard Sandbank site, around 19 miles off the coast of Suffolk.



The new "Galloper wind farm" scheme, which would have a capacity of around 500MW, will double the wind power which will be generated from the area.



Paul Coffey, chief operating officer of parent company RWE Innogy, said: "The opportunity to develop a wind farm close to the Greater Gabbard offshore wind farm site has a number of advantages: we know that this is an excellent site for a wind farm, there is already the necessary infrastructure in place, and if consented one can benefit from the long-term operational and maintenance activities due to the close proximity of the two wind farms."



Maria McCaffery, chief executive of industry body RenewableUK, said the announcement gave "definitive and positive" evidence of the environmental and commercial viability of existing offshore wind projects.



"The site extensions come as a direct consequence of the UK's world-beating offshore wind farms showing that, after a successful start, they have further potential for growth," she said.



In addition to the Greater Gabbard extension, Vattenfall Wind Power has been given approval to extend its Kentish Flats and Thanet projects off the coast of Kent, and Dong Wind UK has received the green light to extend Burbo Bank, near Liverpool, and Walney, Cumbria.



Centrica Renewable Energy has been permitted to install extra capacity on Race Bank and Warwick Energy can add to its Dudgeon site capacity, both off the Norfolk coast.



Responding to the announcement, Friends of the Earth climate campaigner Tony Bosworth said: "This is another significant step forward along the path to a greener, safer future.



"The UK's renewable energy potential is huge - maximising it would slash emissions, increase energy security and generate tens of thousands of jobs.



"All the major political parties agree on the need to build a low-carbon economy - urgent measures to boost green energy must be a top priority for whoever forms the next government."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
peopleMathematician John Nash inspired the film Beautiful Mind
News
Richard Blair is concerned the trenches are falling into disrepair
newsGeorge Orwell's son wants to save war site that inspired book
Life and Style
Audrey Hepburn with Hubert De Givenchy, whose well-cut black tuxedo is a 'timeless look'
fashionIt may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
Arts and Entertainment
The pair in their heyday in 1967
music
Life and Style
fashionFrom bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Day In a Page

Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine