Offshore wind farm developer Scottish Power Renewables submits plans for 172-turbine project

Wind turbines

Scottish Power Renewables has submitted plans for a £1.8bn offshore wind farm off the coast of Suffolk.

The developer has unveiled plans to install 172 wind turbines, with a generating capacity of 1.2GW, across 305km2 of the southern North Sea.

The scheme, called East Anglia Three, is the third phase of development in the ‘East Anglia Zone’.

If approved, Scottish Power Renewables expects onshore construction to start in 2021, with offshore work starting in 2022 and power being generated by 2023.

It says the project could create up to 4,800 jobs during construction and contribute £400m to the economy.

The firm is already developing the East Anglia One offshore windfarm, a £2bn project with 102 turbines and a generating capacity of 714MW.

It comes after energy secretary Amber Rudd announced that new government subsidies will be made available for offshore wind farms, providing the government’s “conditions on cost reduction are met.”

According to reports, offshore wind farm developers will have to prove they can meet a strike price of £92.50 per MWh – the same as the Hinkley Point C nuclear power station – by 2020 to win a contract.

Scottish Power Renewables won a government auction last year for the East Anglia One project with a strike price of £119 per MWh.

Jonathan Cole, the firm’s managing director of offshore wind, said:  “Our East Anglia Three planning submission also highlights our continued commitment to the region, and the tremendous potential in the East of England to develop further large offshore wind projects.

“We have helped to drive costs down in the industry, which increases the prospects of these major infrastructure projects being delivered.

“We hope for a successful outcome to our application, and we look forward to continue growing the offshore wind industry in East Anglia.”