Three years of construction and 20 years of operations and maintenance could deliver £500m for the regional economy
The 1200MW project could see construction begin in 2016 with first power exported in 2018
East Anglia Offshore Wind (EAOW), a 50-50 joint venture between Vattenfall and ScottishPower Renewables, has formally submitted a planning application for a 1200MW offshore windfarm off the coast of East Anglia.
The development, known as East Anglia ONE, will require up to 325 wind turbines and covers an area of 300km2 in the southern North Sea. The project will be able to power the annual electricity demands of around 770,000 homes.
It is anticipated that the development, the first of six potential projects in the East Anglia Zone, could support up to 2,700 jobs across the UK during the construction phase, representing more than £170m for the UK economy for each year of construction. More than 1,600 construction jobs could be supported in the East Anglia region alone, adding over £100m to the regional economy annually during construction.
The planning application will be considered by the National Infrastructure Directorate. If approved, it is anticipated that onshore construction could begin in 2016, with offshore work starting in 2017 and first power generation achieved in 2018.
Once completed, ScottishPower Renewables and Vattenfall expect that up to 170 engineers and technicians will be required to provide operations and maintenance support for the project. These jobs will be required for more than 20 years and will add over £10m to the local economy on an annual basis.
In total, for the three years of construction and 20-plus years of operation for East Anglia ONE the region’s economy could be boosted by £500m and see nearly 1,800 jobs supported or secured.
During the planning process alone, just under £7m of contracts have been awarded to local companies working on the project and a £17m contract was awarded to Wood Group of Aberdeen for the construction and installation of weather monitoring masts.
Andy Paine, EAOW Programme Director, said:
“This is the largest renewable energy project that either Vattenfall or ScottishPower Renewables are developing anywhere in the world. We are delighted to have achieved this major milestone today, following three years of detailed planning and community consultation. East Anglia ONE is a major project that could make a significant contribution to the UK’s carbon reduction targets, and is larger than any offshore windfarm currently in operation.
“Developments like this not only make a substantial contribution to the environment, they also have a significant positive impact on both the local and national economy. Thousands of skilled jobs will be required to construct and manage a project on this scale, which highlights the importance of the offshore wind sector for the UK economy following the recession. Offshore wind will support a new supply chain that will attract billions of pounds of investment and create highly- skilled employment in the engineering and construction sectors for decades.
“Our application will now be considered by the National Infrastructure Directorate, but work on the project will continue and 2013 will be a major year for the scheme. We will start the process of meeting and talking to companies across the East Anglia region and beyond who have the skills and services to support the project.”
The UK Government through The Crown Estate is supporting the development of up to 32GW of offshore wind generation in British waters. Within this, East Anglia Offshore Wind is one of the largest and most ambitious renewable energy projects in the world. In total, the six projects within the zone could generate up to 7.2GW of electricity and power the annual demands of more than 4.6 million homes.
The full East Anglia ONE project will include:
Offshore wind turbines and foundations (up to 325 wind turbines to provide an installed capacity of 1,200MW)
Up to three offshore collector stations and up to two offshore converter stations and their foundations to collect the electricity from the turbines and transform it to a form suitable for transfer to shore.
Up to four seabed export cables, each around 73km in length, to transfer the electricity to shore.
A landfall site with onshore transition pits to connect the offshore and onshore cables.
Up to four onshore underground cables, each of around 37km in length, to transfer the electricity from landfall to an onshore converter station.
Up to eight cable ducts for two future East Anglia projects to connect into Bramford Substation to limit the impact of future construction operations, as cables could be pulled through the pre-laid ducts.
An onshore converter station adjacent to the existing substation at Bramford, Suffolk, to connect the offshore windfarm to the National Grid.
ScottishPower Renewables and Vattenfall have been awarded development rights by The Crown Estate to Zone 5, the East Anglia Zone. To develop the project, ScottishPower Renewables and Vattenfall Wind Power have formed a joint venture company called East Anglia Offshore Wind Limited (EAOW).
The companies are working with stakeholders to realise the full potential of the zone, with initial studies identifying a target capacity of up to 7,200MW, which could provide enough clean, green energy for over 4.6 million homes.
EAOW is currently developing the first project. This project, known as the East Anglia ONE Offshore Windfarm, is located in the south of the zone and covers an area of approximately 300km2. The closest distance to land is located 43.4km off the coast of Suffolk. EAOW has been provided with a grid connection offer from National Grid for 1,200MW at Bramford in Suffolk.
Homes equivalent calculation: Number of megawatts installed, multiplied by number of hours in a year, multiplied by average load factor for offshore wind (0.3196), divided by average annual domestic electricity consumption expressed as MWh (4.37MWh)
For more information on: ScottishPower