UK gives Vattenfall green light for 1.8GW Norfolk Boreas offshore wind farm

Swedish developer now plans to bid for contract for difference in the UK government’s next auction round

Siemens Gamesa recently commissioned the prototype of its SG 14-222 DD. Norfolk Boreas and Vanguard are due to use the uprated version with a 236-metre rotor

Vattenfall has received the final permitting decisions needed for its 1396MW Norfolk Boreas (Phase 1) offshore wind farm off England's east coast.

It will now proceed to finalise financing and supply chain agreements for the wind farm.

However, Boreas’s sister project, the 1800MW Norfolk Vanguard wind farm, still requires final permitting approval after the UK high court withdrew construction permission for the project earlier this year. Approval for Boreas came despite concerns raised by environmental groups in the UK that the turbines' blades could kill birds.

The Swedish developer intends to bid for contracts for difference (CfDs) for Boreas in the UK government’s next auction round, which is due to open later this month. If it receives permitting approval from the UK secretary of state for the Vanguard project before the bidding window closes, it will also bid for a CfD for Vanguard, a Vattenfall spokesman told Windpower Monthly.

It plans to intensify work with suppliers and skills providers next year ahead of starting construction on Boreas in 2023.

Vattenfall expects to achieve first power from the Norfolk projects in the middle of this decade.

It will use four 1.5 metre-wide cable duct trenches to transport all electricity produced by the two projects. It will also use a phased approach to construction, whereby cable works are completed in short sections along the cable route with the land quickly restored to minimise local and environmental impacts.

Norfolk Boreas and Vanguard are due to use Siemens Gamesa’s SG 14-236 DD turbines, pending a final investment decision. The European turbine manufacturer today (10 December) announced that it has produced first power from a prototype of the 222-metre rotor variant of its 14MW turbine at the Østerild test centre in Denmark.