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Wind power: Gordon Brown approves huge offshore windfarm

Prime Minister Gordon Brown last night confirmed planning consent for a 500MW windfarm off the coast of Barrow-in-Furness in Cumbria.

Speaking at the CBI Scotland annual dinner in Glasgow last night, Brown revealed the go-ahead for 139 turbines to be constructed at West of Duddon Sands wind farm near Walney Island, by emphasising Britain's need for energy security in the current economic climate.

"The oil and food price rises have revealed a growing scramble for resources," said Brown.

"There must be a revolution in the way we think about and use resources: reducing our dependence on oil and by creating a low carbon economy; achieving greater security of energy supply and greater efficiency of energy use."

Developer Morecambe Wind claims West of Duddon Sands will produce enough electricity to power 372,000 homes. Along with the 1GW London Array and 500MW Greater Gabbard scheme off the Suffolk coast it is one of the largest offshore windfarms to receive planning consent in the UK.

Energy Secretary John Hutton also approved yesterday an updated
application from Ormonde Energy to build a 150MW wind farm comprising of up to 30 turbines, which will also be sited near to Walney Island.

"These wind farms demonstrate our commitment to dramatically increase the amount of energy we generate from renewable sources, helping to cut the UK's carbon emissions and secure our energy supplies," said Hutton.

"West of Duddon Sands will be one of the three largest wind farms
approved to date and will help provide a significant contribution
towards our renewable energy targets.

"Companies want to build here because we have made the UK one of the most attractive places to invest in offshore wind. It won't be long
before enough offshore wind power is plugged in to the grid to make
us world leaders, a fantastic achievement in less than a decade."

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