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The World’s largest offshore wind farm in waiting gets to work

Previously only known for its place in the shipping forecast, Dogger Bank has more recently been home to the world’s largest offshore wind farm under construction and, while it is still very much ‘under construction’, it has now begun generating power for the first time. 

The first of what will be 277 turbines has been installed and is now connected to the national grid, providing renewable power to homes and businesses. 

The Dogger Bank Offshore Development Zone is located between 125 and 290km off the east coast of Yorkshire and extends over approximately 8,660km² with water depths ranging from 18m to 63m.

The wind farm currently being developed will occupy an area almost as large as Greater London. When fully complete it will have an installed capacity of 3.6GW of renewable electricity – more than two and a half times the size of the next largest offshore wind farm – and be capable of producing enough clean energy to power the equivalent of 6 million homes annually.

The 260m tall turbines are almost twice the height of the London Eye and each revolution of the 107m long blades will produce enough clean energy to power an average UK home for 2 days.

Once fully operational – which is expected to be by 2026 –  Dogger Bank will generate annual CO2 savings equivalent to the emissions of nearly 1.5 million average internal combustion engine petrol cars.

Dogger Bank has created and supported more than 2,000 jobs, principally in the North East of England and the project has delivered a number of world-firsts that will significantly accelerate the speed at which future offshore projects can be developed. These include deployment of new 13MW and 14MW turbine technology, the world’s first unmanned offshore High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) substation platform, and first use of HVDC technology on a UK wind farm.

SSE Renewables is lead operator for the development and construction of the wind farm, while Equinor will be lead operator on completion, for its expected operational life of around 35 years. 

Alistair Phillips-Davies, Chief Executive of SSE, said: ‘There’s been lots of talk about the need to build homegrown energy supplies, but we are taking action on a massive scale. Dogger Bank will provide a significant boost to UK energy security, affordability and leadership in tackling climate change. This is exactly how we should be responding to the energy crisis.

‘But it is also a landmark moment for the global offshore wind industry, with Dogger Bank demonstrating just what can be achieved when policymakers, investors, industry, and communities work together to achieve something truly remarkable.

‘The innovations this pioneering project has developed will also mean future developments can be built faster and more efficiently, accelerating the clean energy transition. Now, of course, the challenge is to accelerate the next wave of these projects and we look forward to working with governments to bring these forward as soon as possible.’

Anders Opedal, CEO of Equinor, said: ‘Set against the broader energy context, Dogger Bank, the world’s largest offshore wind farm demonstrates the best of what the offshore wind industry can offer, with innovative technologies, long-term jobs and economic growth and security of electricity supply at a major scale.

‘A renewable mega-project like Dogger Bank constitutes an industrial wind hub in the heart of the North Sea, playing a major role in the UK’s ambitions for offshore wind and supporting its net zero ambitions.

‘First power from Dogger Bank, is a testament to the collaboration between the authorities, the project partners, suppliers and our host communities to realise this project.’

 

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