UK Green Light for 15 Offshore Wind Farms

UK Energy Minister Stephen Timms said the Round Two awards will bring about the biggest expansion of renewable energy anywhere in the world. UK Energy Minister Stephen Timms said the Round Two awards will bring about the biggest expansion of renewable energy anywhere in the world.

In the week before Christmas the UK's Crown Estate revealed plans for 15 new 'Round Two' offshore wind farms and named the companies which have bid successfully to develop them.

Energy Minister Stephen Timms heralded 'the biggest expansion of renewable energy anywhere in the world' as leases awarded by the UK's Department of Trade andIndustry will see between 5.4 and 7.2GW of new wind capacity installed offshore.

This will be sufficient to provide power to four million homes, or one in six of UK households.

The new wind farms will be built in three strategic areas of shallow water, the Thames Estuary, the Greater Wash, and the North West. Three of the 15 sites will be outside UK territorial waters, including the world's largest proposed offshore wind farm in the Greater Wash which will alone provide up to 1.2GW of generating capacity.

Marcus Rand, Chief Executive of the British Wind Energy Association (BWEA), commenting on the news said, 'We have the best wind resource in Europe and today's announcement puts the UK in the fast lane to becoming a world leader in developing it offshore.'

The successful bidders for second round wind farms in the Greater Wash are AMEC at Docking Shoal and Race Bank, Ecoventures at Sheringham Shoal, Humber Wind Limited at Humber, National Wind Power at Triton Knoll, Total at Westernmost Rough, and Warwick Energy at Dudgeon East.

In the Thames Estuary, Airtricity-Fluor has won Greater Gabbard, Deltaic will build Gunfleet Sands II, Warwick Energy has Thanet and London Array will develop a site of the same name.

In the North West, DONG/ Statkraft will proceed at Walney, National Wind Power at Gwynt y Mor, and Scottish Power at West Duddon.

With interest in the sector growing rapidly, the BWEA has announced a special conference, UK Offshore Wind 2004, which will take place on the 3-4 March at the Tower Thistle Hotel in London. Energy Minister Stephen Timms has agreed to give the keynote presentation on the opening day.

Email offshore@bwea. com to register interest.

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