Energy giant E.on got planning permission for a massive 230-MW offshore wind farm, the Humber Gateway wind farm, last week in the UK. This project will involve 77 wind turbines off the coast of Yorkshire in northeast England and is expected to be up and running in 2014. When completed, this project should provide energy for up to 170,000 homes. It will be E.on’s 5th offshore wind farm.
A tender process for the wind farm is expected to start later in the year.
The project is “further recognition of our expertise in the sector generally and in offshore wind in particular” according to Michael Lewis, managing director for E.ON’s European renewables business.
Of course, the UK’s Energy and Climate Change Secretary was happy with the announcement and the UK’s continued leadership in offshore wind energy.
“Offshore wind not only provides clean, green, secure energy, the investment that comes with it is great for the UK economy too,” Chris Huhne said. “A new wind farm off the Humberside coast will be a further jobs and investment boost for the region, hot on the heels of Siemens’ announcement of plans to develop the Port of Hull.”
The UK is also facing some offshore wind energy challenges and concerns, however.
“[S]ome within the sector are concerned about the way in which the government’s proposed electricity market reforms will result in a move away from the current subsidy regime under the Renewable Obligation scheme,” James Murray of Business Green reports.
“Meanwhile, manufacturers have expressed concerns that a potential two year gap between the current round of projects and the proposed Round 3 developments could lead to a hiatus in orders for many of the firms within the supply chain.”
We’ll see. But, for now, this is yet another positive announcement regarding offshore wind energy in the UK, which seems to have such news every other week or so these days.
Photo Credit: Wessex Archaeology