The massive London Array offshore windfarm last week secured €2.2bn (£1.97bn) of funding from project developers E.On, Dong and Masdar.
The first phase will involve building the first 630MW of capacity for the 1GW wind farm in the Thames Estuary. Once complete, it will provide enough power for 750,000 homes - equivalent to one quarter of those in Greater London.
The first power from the London Array scheme is expected to feed into the grid by 2012.
Prime minister Gordon Brown and climate change secretary Ed Miliband welcomed the announcement. “The London Array is a flagship project in our drive to cut emissions by 80% by 2050 and meet future energy needs,” said Brown. “The UK is a world leader in offshore wind farms, creating jobs and prosperity for the economy. That’s why we have increased our support for this technology as we move towards a low carbon future. “E.On, DONG and Masdar are to be congratulated for their work on the London Array.”
“This is another green light for green energy. It’s a vote of confidence in the support the Government has put into backing renewable energy,” said Miliband. “The UK is already the world’s leading offshore wind power and this multi-billion pound project will help keep us there, cut our carbon emissions and contribute to secure energy supplies.”