Environment

Norfolk offshore wind farm that could power nearly two million homes approved by UK government

The major offshore wind farm will be almost 30 miles offshore and will consist of between 90 and 180 turbines.

A wind farm that is capable of generating electricity for nearly two million homes has been approved by the UK government.

The government has granted consent to Vattenfall’s 1.8-gigawatt Norfolk Vanguard project which Vattenfall have called a “great step forward in the battle against climate change”.

Industry body RenewableUK’s chief executive, Hugh McNeal, said the project would help the UK “maintain our global lead in offshore wind”.

He said: “[The decision] means the UK is taking a significant step closer towards our net zero emissions target.

“These projects will help us to maintain our global lead in offshore wind, as well as building up our UK supply chain.”

Mr McNeal believes the decision would boost the chances of the government meeting its target to deliver 40 gigawatts of offshore wind by 2030.

The UK government plans to end its contribution to global warming by 2050.

Last year it said that it had already reduced emissions by 42% and had put “clean growth” at the heart of its modern Industrial Strategy.

The offshore wind farm could help the government deliver its target of 40 gigawatts of offshore wind by 2030. (Nicholas Doherty, Unsplash)

The wind farm will generate enough electricity to power 1.95 million homes a year and provide 400 jobs during the construction phase.

Despite concerns about the impact on “the landscape around the substation, traffic and transport” raised in a government report, Secretary of State for Energy Alok Sharma said “on balance, the benefits of the proposed development outweigh its adverse impacts”.

Gunnar Groebler, the head of Vattenfall’s wind power business, said the decision to approve the Vanguard project “sends a strong signal that the UK is serious about its climate ambitions”.

Mr Sharma said he was also “minded” to approve another project, the 2.4GW Hornsea 3 wind farm.

Proposed by the Danish company Orsted, it would extend the Hornsea 1 and 2 projects further into the North Sea.

The government expects to make a decision on the Hornsea 3 project by the end of September.

According to RenewableUK, if Hornsea 3 was approved, the wind farms could generate enough clean electricity to power almost 4 million UK homes, as well as providing a boost to the economy.

On the government’s plan to achieve net zero emissions by 2050, Mr McNeal added: “Confirmation of a positive decision on Hornsea 3 will get us there even faster.”


On this day…

In 1957… Althea Gibson won Wimbledon, becoming the first black athlete to do so. Gibson was also the first black athlete to win the French and US Open championships and in 1964 became the first black woman to join the Ladies Professional Golf Association Tour.


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