Huge wind farm off Suffolk coast to create hundreds of jobs

AN enormous new wind farm off the Suffolk coast will create hundreds of jobs and provide enough electricity for more than four million homes, it emerged last night.

ScottishPower Renewables and Swedish energy utility Vattenfall have been awarded rights to develop a huge scheme in the North Sea.

It will cover approximately 6,000 km2 - stretching from Suffolk in to Norfolk - and generate up to 7,200 megawatts of electricity.

Last night bosses said the project would provide hundreds of new jobs and enough electricity to power more than four million homes.

The first phase - known as East Anglia ONE - will be built around 43km (about 25 miles) off the Suffolk coast and will cover an area of 300km2.


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It will be made up of around 420 turbines creating 1,200 megawatts of electricity - enough for 720,000 homes.

In comparison the Greater Gabbard Offshore Wind Farm, which should be completed in about two years and is around 25 kilometres (about 15 miles) from Sizewell, will be made up of 140 turbines generating around 500 megawatts.

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Last night a spokesman for ScottishPower Renewables said they were hoping to table a planning application for East Anglia ONE by the start of 2013 so that construction could start in 2015.

He also confirmed that they had already received an offer from National Grid to connect the electricity through a sub station at Bramford, near Ipswich.

However he said the company would “bend over backwards” to ensure any connections were kept underground.

Last year National Grid’s proposals for a new line of pylons from Bramford to Twinstead, near Sudbury, generated fierce opposition - with the EADT leading the fight.

Although he was unable to give a cast iron guarantee the spokesman said it was ScottishPower Renewables’ preferred option to underground the connection.

“We understand people have concerns,” he said. “Our preferred method is to underground the cable and we will be bending over backwards to try and achieve that.

“We realise it is a sensitive area and we want to be up front with people. We are incredibly keen to engage with the local community and the consultation process will be held in due course. We have always kept people informed about the project and we will continue to do so.”

Build programmes are expected to be continuous from 2015 with the last project starting activity in 2020.

“There are plenty of opportunities,” the spokesman continued. “It is difficult to give exact figures but the project will need hundreds of staff, from construction workers through to support boats and once its built people to run it. We would encourage people to find out what’s available.”

For more details on the project visit www.eastangliawind.com.

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