UK: Forewind Signs Agreement for Three 1GW Grid Connections
Forewind, development partner for the Dogger Bank offshore wind farm zone, has signed connection agreements with National Grid for three further 1GW grid connections, adding to the 3GW signed since the zone was awarded in early-2010.
These latest agreements for connections located in Teesside and Yorkshire mean Forewind can proceed with the development of a total of 6GW of offshore wind farm generation capacity. This could feasibly generate as much green energy per year as the total amount of electricity used annually by homes and industry in Yorkshire and the Humber region.
Forewind signed a 1GW grid agreement to connect its first project into the Creyke Beck substation, near Cottingham, in the East Riding of Yorkshire, in March 2010, so this latest signing means a total of 2GW of generation capacity could connect at this site. This first stage of Forewind’s development is known as Dogger Bank Creyke Beck.
The other two new 1GW connections are likely to connect into an as yet undefined site in the Teesside area. Forewind and National Grid will now enter into a further study phase to identify the most suitable connection location within Teesside for these two projects.
This builds on Forewind’s existing two grid connection agreements for the Teesside area, planned to connect at an existing substation in Lackenby. This second stage of Forewind’s development, known as Dogger Bank Teesside,will therefore comprise a maximum of four wind farm projects.
Forewind Head of Electrical Systems, David Flood acknowledged the organisation’s close working relationship with National Grid over the past two years and is delighted with the identification of these mutually acceptable grid locations for what is a very complex development.
“Both organisations have worked extremely hard on this agreement, which demonstrates Forewind’s ambitions and the appetite of our parent companies to take these projects forward. We can now proceed with determining the optimum onshore cable routes and coastal cable landfall points to connect a total of six offshorewind farms to the electricity network,” Mr Flood said. “Securing further capacity close to our existing connection agreements offers the opportunity to reduce the impact of the projects, which could provide clean electricity tomillions of homes.”
Forewind has the objective to achieve consent for at least 9GW of offshore wind farm projects, with a potential capacity for the Dogger Bank zone of up to 13GW. This figure equates to almost 10 per cent of the UK’s projected electricity requirements. This huge undertaking means that the zone will bedeveloped as a series of up to 12 separate similar-sized wind farm projects.
Forewind’s immediate priority is to focus on the development of its first six projects, but the organisation will also continue to engage with National Grid to identify future suitable connection points for the projects to come.
[mappress] Offshore WIND staff, March 02, 2012; Image: Forewind