Big step forward for East Anglia ONE wind farm project

One of the Siemens 7MW turbines to be installed off the Suffolk coast on the new East Anglia ONE win

One of the Siemens 7MW turbines to be installed off the Suffolk coast on the new East Anglia ONE wind farm - Credit: Archant

Contracts have been signed for turbines costing £800million for a green power development off the Suffolk coast – believed to be the biggest deal for an offshore wind farm in Europe so far.

The deal announced by ScottishPower Renewables and Siemens for the 102 turbines for the East Anglia ONE project is around one-third of the £2.5billion cost of the scheme, which when complete will generate electricity for more than 500,000 homes every year.

The 75 metre long turbine blades are planned to be made in Siemens’ new factory in Hull, and £5m is set to be invested in Great Yarmouth Harbour, which will act as the pre-assembly port for the installation of the turbines.

The project is expected to create 3,000 jobs during construction.

Keith Anderson, chief executive officer of ScottishPower Renewables, said: “We have concluded Europe’s largest project-specific wind turbine agreement just a month after taking our final investment decision, and we have scaled the final hurdle by satisfying our CFD conditions with the Low Carbon Contracts Company.

“It is now full steam ahead for East Anglia ONE, with ground set to be broken early next year.

“East Anglia ONE is the first of up to four projects we would like to build in the southern North Sea, and we hope that our plans will stimulate jobs and investment for the UK and across the region for decades to come.”

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ScottishPower Renewables is delivering a large cut in the cost of offshore wind power through East Anglia ONE, with a cost of electricity set at £119/MWh after a successful bid in the UK Government auction.

Six onshore underground cables, each of around 37 km in length, will transfer the electricity from landfall to an onshore converter station.

A converter station is to be built at Bramford next to the existing substation to connect the offshore wind farm to the National Grid.

Michael Hannibal, chief excutive of the Siemens Wind Power and Renewables Division, said: “This represents the largest single order ever for our direct-drive, 7-megawatt wind turbine.

“The decision to go with our innovative wind turbines underscores the contribution made by these units to reducing the costs of offshore wind power.”