UK's biggest wind farm to be built off Norfolk coast

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Britain's biggest wind farm, to be built off the Norfolk coast at a cost of £70m, was approved by the Government yesterday.

Britain's biggest wind farm, to be built off the Norfolk coast at a cost of £70m, was approved by the Government yesterday.

The 38 turbines will be built at Scroby Sands, a sand bank nearly two miles off Great Yarmouth.

Two wind farms operating in Powys, Wales, each have more turbines, but Scroby Sands will be capable of generating 76 megawatts, more than double any existing wind energy plant. The power will be enough to run 52,000 homes.

Although offshore wind power plays an important role in the Netherlands, Denmark and Sweden, its potential has hardly been touched in Britain. Only two turbines have been constructed off the coast, near Blyth in Northumberland.

Powergen Renewables will start construction in the winter and the power station is expected to open by November next year.

The Energy minister, Brian Wilson, said the project was a "significant step" towards the Government's target of producing 10 per cent of electricity from renewable resources. Offshore wind technology was ready for "major deployment" in Britain, he said.

Permission for Scroby Sands was granted after five years of investigation into the impact on bird and seal colonies on the sand bank, which found the project would not disturb breeding patterns.

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