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Thursday, 23 October 2014

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Why wind experts Dong have a shore fire winner on their hands

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Bowind work: MV Resolution, a purpose-built wind farm installing ship

THE Vikings once came to plunder and pillage the Cumbrian shores – now their affluent, friendly descendants just want to borrow our coastal winds.

Danish Oil and Natural Gas, Denmark’s state-owned energy company, has a commitment of £2bn to the Energy Coast.
It owns 50/50 with Centrica the 30-turbine Barrow wind farm called Bowind, four miles off Walney Island, which was the county’s first, and is sole owner of the £1.2bn two-phase Walney Wind Farm which will have 102 turbines spinning off the Furness Coast by 2012.

It is also a third owner of another mega scheme, the West of Duddon Sands, now called Morecambe Wind, which will have up to 150 turbines in the Irish Sea.

Dong is also known to be interested in Round Three, for which bidding closed in March, and which include zones around the UK including one much further out to sea from the Cumbrian coast.

The Danish firm also runs Burbo Bank wind farm off Wallasey and altogether has seven offshore wind farms installed and working in UK and Danish waters.

Dong spokesman Andreas Krog said: “We have significant experience of offshore wind farms. We have built more than 50 per cent of the offshore wind farms in the world, including the world’s first.

“Barrow was put into operation in 2007. We have had a very good experience with it. That is why we are going ahead with Walney’s two areas. It is a windy area.”

Dong in the UK is now pressing ahead with developments at Gunfleet Sands in Essex, and will own a third of what will be the world’s biggest wind farm, the London Array, which when fully built will have 900 megawatts of power generated by 278 turbines.

The turbines for the Walney Wind Farm will be 3.6 megawatts and will tower 160 metres from the surface of the sea to the tip of the highest turbine blade. They will stand in depths of water ranging from 19m to 28m, where the average wind speed is 9.4m per second.

On June 25 it was announced that Dong had signed a deal with ABP to use the port of Barrow as a massive lay down area for the 400 tonne foundation piles and 350 tonne transition pieces for the two phase, 102 turbine programme.

More jobs are expected to be created by Dong in Barrow as the wind industry takes off.

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