The Crown Estate, owner of the seabed and a partner in the project, awarded the area (known as Zone 7), which is to the west of the Isle of Wight, to Eneco in 2009. This followed a tendering process designed to allow around 32GW of offshore wind power generation to be developed in UK waters by 2020. Projects of this size and complexity require many different skills and resources; therefore Eneco has chosen to partner with EDF Energy to develop the Navitus Bay Offshore Wind Project.
Eneco and EDF Energy share a commitment to investing in the UK renewables market. Both believe that renewable projects of this nature are vital to ensuring a secure, affordable and sustainable future energy supply in the UK. EDF Energy has a strong track record of delivering nationally significant energy projects in the UK, complementing Eneco's expertise in developing renewables projects in both the Netherlands and the UK.
The proposed development of Navitus Bay could deliver between 900MW and 1200MW of capacity in the northern part of the awarded area, a site which covers 76 square miles. This is enough power to supply between 615,000 and 820,000 homes, and will prevent the production of approximately 1,186,000 tonnes of CO2 each year. Eneco and EDF Energy will now work together to carry out a programme of onshore and offshore consultation with the local community. They plan to submit a Development Consent Order (the wind farm's planning application) to the Infrastructure Planning Commission (IPC) at the end of 2013.
Huub den Rooijen, Head of Offshore Wind, The Crown Estate, said: "We welcome today's announcement that EDF Energy is forming a joint venture with Eneco for the Navitus Bay Offshore Wind Project. The arrival of one of Europe's biggest utility companies into the Round 3 programme provides another boost for the offshore wind industry, bringing new expertise and skills into the UK market to help drive forward the world's largest offshore wind programme."
Guy Madgwick, Director Eneco Wind UK said: "We are pleased to be working alongside EDF Energy to develop the Navitus Bay Offshore Wind Project. They bring strong credentials in developing nationally significant infrastructure projects of this nature and importantly share our view that investment in renewable energy projects, such as Navitus Bay, is vital to securing an affordable and sustainable future UK energy supply. It is through strategic partnerships such as this that we hope to accelerate progress towards Eneco's goal of providing ‘sustainable energy for everyone."
Martin Lawrence, Director of EDF Energy's Energy Sourcing and Customer Supply business today said: "We are delighted to be partnering with Eneco to help deliver this exciting project. EDF Energy is committed to investment in low carbon technologies and believes that renewable energy plays a key part of the country's energy mix going forward. Developing a range of diverse energy sources is crucial to addressing climate change, ensuring security of supply and providing affordable energy for all our customers."
Taking a closer look