German power group RWE Innogy has bought the rights to the North Sea Windpower 3 project from Germany's Enova Group, renaming it Innogy Nordsee 1. The 960 MW project is planned for a 150 square kilometre area, 40 kilometres north of the island Juist. The site has potential for 4000 full-load hours of energy supply a year, amounting to more than 3 TWh, says RWE. The company expects project approval by the end of 2009, with the first wind turbines operating in 2011. Full completion is scheduled for 2015 at a total cost of around EUR 2.8 billion. The clean energy will save emissions of 2.6 million tonnes of CO2 from fossil fuel generation, helping RWE offset its reliance in Germany on lignite generation. The acquisition is part of RWE Innogy's strategic focus on offshore wind. In November, it acquired 50% of the Greater Gabbard 500 MW project in the British North Sea and it has 900 MW of installed or planned capacity off the Welsh coast, while in the Netherlands it is applying for a licence for 2 GW at two locations.
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