The available capacity for the Crown Estate’s planned offshore wind leasing round 5 in the UK has increased by 500MW to a potential 4.5GW, with the number of sites up for auction reduced from four to three.
The changes were announced in a statement updating details of the planned offshore wind tender, which is targeting new floating offshore wind projects in the Celtic Sea off the UK’s south-west coast.
Each of the project areas up for auction will be of “roughly equal size” of around 1.5GW, the Crown Estate said, boosting the total capacity up for auction despite the reduction in the number of seabed lease areas from four to three.
No bidder will able to secure more than one area in the auction, the Crown Estate said.
Developers shunned the UK’s recent contracts for difference tender for renewables projects including offshore wind in September, citing uncompetitive costs and energy price caps they said hampered the financial case for investing.