DONG Energy announced today it has decided to construct the 660MW Walney Extension Offshore Wind Farm, located in the Irish Sea, approximately 19 kilometersm off the west coast of Britain.
The final investment decision has been made after securing all necessary consents from authorities, completing site assessments and having signed the majority of the contracts for supply and installation to build the project, DONG said.
Walney Extension is expected to be fully commissioned in 2018, at which time it will be the biggest offshore wind farm in the world, surpassing the 630MW London Array Offshore Wind Farm which was commissioned in 2014 by DONG Energy and its partners. The wind farm will be constructed and operated under the U.K.'s EMR FID-enabling regime with a fixed price for the first 15 years of production.
Samuel Leupold, Executive Vice President at DONG Energy, said, “Walney Extension will deliver clean electricity to more than 460,000 U.K. homes and I’m very pleased that we can now start construction of what will be the world’s biggest offshore wind farm when completed. Building this offshore wind farm will bring us significantly closer to realizing our strategy of having 6.5GW of installed capacity online by 2020.”
DONG said it will apply two different turbines: 40 8MW turbines from MHI Vestas Offshore Wind and 47 Siemens 7MW offshore turbines.
Leupold continued, “British offshore wind has seen phenomenal growth in recent years. A prerequisite for long term growth in the industry is that offshore wind eventually can compete on costs with other energy technologies. Building Walney Extension will bring us one step closer to that target, and I’m satisfied to see that we keep bringing costs down, while continuing to expand the U.K. supply chain.
“I’m also excited about the fact that turbine blades, part of the foundations and cable installation will come from U.K. manufacturing facilities and vessels and create local jobs.”