Three offshore wind farms sold in £1bn deal

Vattenfall sold the projects after pausing work on one of them in the summer.
The projects could provide power for millions of homes (Gareth Fuller/PA)
PA Archive
August Graham5 minutes ago

The rights to develop three of Britain’s largest wind farms have been sold by Swedish Energy giant Vattenfall to German rival RWE for nearly £1 billion, the companies said.

Vattenfall confirmed the sale after pausing work on one of the three sites earlier this year, saying that the finances simply no longer stacked up after it was hit by massive cost inflation.

The three projects are known collectively as the Norfolk Offshore Wind Zone and are situated off the east coast of England. The sale will allow Vattenfall to invest in other projects which are more to its taste.

All three sites have the consent needed from the Government to go ahead. When built, they will supply around 4.2 gigawatts (GW) of power to the UK’s grid, about the amount that four million households consume.

Vattenfall will stay in the UK as it still runs on and offshore wind farms and is developing a nearly 800-megawatt (MW) floating wind farm in the North Sea.

Vattenfall chief executive Anna Borg said: “The Norfolk Offshore Wind Zone is incredibly important for the energy transition and reaching net zero.

“Today’s agreement with RWE is great news for the UK’s energy security, ensuring the zone’s continued journey towards providing clean electricity for over four million homes as well as jobs and investment into the UK.

“Both the UK and the offshore market remain attractive over the long term, and we will focus our offshore investments in projects which are appropriate to our current risk appetite while continuing to operate and grow our existing fleet of assets.”

Vattenfall made waves in the renewables sector in July as it paused work on one of the projects, called Boreas.

The company had won the right last year to supply power to the grid from Boreas for £37.35 per megawatt hour (MWh), a record low for offshore wind.

But the business said that since signing that contract the cost of building a wind farm had soared by around 40%. It therefore decided to pause development on the site.