The $1.2 billion Thanet Offshore Wind Farm started sending power to the electric grid last week. While I was caught up with other stories at the time, I thought this was definitely worth coming back to.
The Thanet Offshore Wind Farm includes “100 Vestas V90 wind turbines that have a total capacity of 300 MW.” It creates enough power for 200,000 homes. The UK’s offshore wind energy capacity has increased 30% as a result of this new wind farm and it makes the UK the largest producer of wind energy in the world.
The wind farm sits, at its closest, about 12 kilometers (7.5 miles) off the shore of Foreness Point, which is located at the most eastern part of Kent, England.
Vattenfall is the company that acquired this wind farm project in November 2008 and brought it to completion last week. The company is a leading wind energy company in Britain and the 5th largest energy producer in Europe.
An interesting note the company made in its news release is that this could become a tourist attraction. “Many visitors have been attracted to both onshore and offshore wind farm developments in the past,” Vattenfall writes. This is completely believable to me, but not something you often hear mentioned, and it almost makes me laugh to, alternatively, think about the largest coal power plant being a tourist attraction — highly unlikely!
UK a Leader in Wind Energy, Clean Energy
“With 5GW of wind energy capacity already feeding the UK grid (three-quarters of which comes from land-based wind farms) and another another 18GW of wind capacity in construction and in the project pipeline, the UK is well on its way to reach its renewable energy target of generating one-third of its electricity via renewable sources by 2020,” Timothy Hurst of Earth & Industry writes.
Nice to see the UK making strong movements forward in clean, renewable, wind energy. While Northern Ireland and Scotland are aiming for 40% renewable energy by 2020 and 100% renewable energy by 2025, respectively, England isn’t doing bad either. The US, which is maybe going to set a Renewable Energy Standard of 15% by 2021, could learn a lesson or two from this old island nation.
Photo Credit: Vattenfall
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