World’s biggest offshore wind farm opens in UK

UK Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Edward Davey opened the world’s biggest offshore wind farm on 9 February.

The new wind power, located near Walney in Cumbria, north-west England, comprises 102 wind turbines, enough to power 320,000 homes. It sits alongside 60 other wind turbines generating off the Cumbrian coast, with more planned.

Opening the new wind farm, Secretary of State Edward Davey, said: "Britain has a lot to be proud of in our growing offshore wind power sector. Our island’s tremendous natural resource, our research base and a proud history of engineering make this the number one destination for investment in offshore wind power.

"And Walney is the newest, biggest and fastest-built jewel in that crown, providing clean power for hundreds of thousands of households.

Commenting on the opening, Paul Steedman, Energy Campaigner at Friends of the Earth said: “The UK has one of the biggest wind resources in the world – the opening of this massive new wind farm is fantastic news, but in terms of what we could achieve it’s just a drop in the ocean.

“Cash-strapped families are facing rocketing fuel bills because of our reliance on expensive gas and coal – the only long-term solution is to invest in clean British energy and slashing energy waste."

Wind power in UK

1997: 319 MW
1998: 333 MW
1999: 347 MW
2000: 409 MW
2001: 474 MW
2002: 552 MW
2003: 684 MW
2004: 888 MW
2005: 1,353 MW
2006: 1,963 MW
2007: 2,389 MW
2008: 3,288 MW
2009: 4,051 MW
2010: 5,204 MW
2011: 6,540 MW