Gwynt wind farm

The UK Green Investment Bank (GIB) has agreed to buy a 50% stake in Westermost Rough offshore wind project from DONG Energy along with Marubeni for £241m (€291m).

The bank will also purchase a 10% share of the Gwynt y Môr wind project from RWE Innogy for £220m (€266m).

The Westermost Rough project located off the coast of Yorkshire is in the early stages of construction and will use Siemens’ next generation 6MW direct drive turbines. Upon completion, the project will generate more than 800GWh of net renewable power.

Gwynt y Môr is also an under construction offshore wind project in Europe and will generate more than 1,700GWh of net renewable power annually.

GIB chief executive Shaun Kingsbury said the UK has ambitious plans to build on its position as a world leader in offshore wind.

Kingsbury said, "We have two roles to play in supporting those plans. Firstly, to directly invest to help developers recycle their capital into the next wave of new renewable energy projects.

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"Secondly, to invest on fully commercial terms to create a demonstration effect which others will follow."

GIB said that the investments are part of a plan to mobilise capital into the UK offshore wind industry.

The UK business secretary Vince Cable said the Green Investment Bank is playing a game-changing role in financing our transition to a green economy.

"The investments are part of a plan to mobilise capital into the UK offshore wind industry."

"The Bank has now invested more than £600m in five offshore wind farms and mobilised £1.3bn of total funding. This industry has the potential to generate thousands of new skilled jobs and billions in business investment," Cable said.

DONG Energy Wind Power executive vice-president Samuel Leupold said, "The agreement with Marubeni and the UK Green Investment Bank is a major step for DONG Energy’s partnership model. We have been able to enter into a shared construction risk partnership and at the same time we have locked-in significant value creation from the transaction."

RWE Innogy CEO Dr Hans Bünting said, "This is planned to be the second direct investment from the Green Investment Bank into one of our UK offshore wind farms. By continuing to open up our projects to investors, we maintain our stated objective of being a trusted partner for the transformation of the European energy system, within which the UK has a key role."

Image: Offshore wind farm Gwynt y Môr. Photo: courtesy of RWE.