Green light for Triton grid
UPDATE: Innogy plans auction bid in next CfD round
UK energy secretary Greg Clark has granted the go ahead for the electrical infrastructure necessary to connect Innogy and Statkraft’s 900MW Triton Knoll offshore wind farm in the east of England.
The minister issued his decision today, confirming a recommendation made by Planning Inspectorate officials in June based on three months of examination.
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Infrastructure includes onshore and offshore cabling, an intermediate electrical compound to provide voltage stability and a substation near the grid connection point for the £4bn project.
Power from the project some 33km into the North Sea will come ashore in east Lincolnshire and connect at Bicker Fen.
The Round 2 project was awarded a development consent order for the offshore array in July 2013.
A project spokesman said the decision would enable the east coast wind farm to "now progress as a fully consented project into the next Contracts for Difference auction process".
Innogy head of offshore investment Richard Sandford said the company has remained committed to the project for almost 13 years and believes Triton is "one of the strongest opportunities" for low cost, home grown UK energy.
Statkraft offshore wind vice president Olav Hetland said the aim is to make the project "one of the most cost competitive offshore wind projects to date".
"In the Humber area, we anticipate the project could be worth a total of around £224million and support over 800 jobs annually during construction alone, while its operation could support a further 220 jobs annually locally," added consent delivery manager Melissa Read.
Project director James Cotter said: “Triton Knoll aims to be one of the most cost competitive offshore wind farms in Europe by seeking best value in all aspects of the project."
Triton holds a pair of grid connection offers with 360MW scheduled for 2019 and 540MW for 2020.
Statkraft took a 50% stake in the £4bn project in February 2015 and has indicated it will sell its portion of the project once a CfD is secured and before construction.
RenewableUK deputy chief executive Maf Smith said Triton offers "massive potential" for domestic supply chain success.
"The developers of this major infrastructure project are working hard to ensure that British supply chain companies will reap the economic benefits on offer from Triton Knoll," he said.
Clark confirmed the decision today despite a statutory deadline of Saturday 3 September. In a statement, BEIS said the decision itself was confirmed on the next working day and therefore was within the deadline which fell at the weekend.
Clark said: “This grid connection brings the Triton Knoll offshore wind farm one step closer, strengthening the offshore wind industry on the east coast even further and creating numerous jobs for people in the area."