E.ON’s Blyth Offshore Wind Farm to be decommissioned, bringing to a close its pioneering contribution to the development of renewable technology
Wind farms typically have a lifespan of around 20-25 years, and so Blyth Offshore Wind Farm has reached the end of its time. I think we can all be proud of the role it’s played in the renewable energy industry, and its legacy for the port and waters around Blyth.
The UK’s first offshore wind farm, built off the Northumberland coast by a consortium including E.ON in 2000, is to be taken down, with work beginning in April and expected to last around four to six weeks. When in operation, the two 2MW turbines generated enough power to supply over 2,000 homes and saved 4,520 tonnes of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere each year.
Since the wind farm’s construction one kilometre off the Northumberland coast, the Blyth area has become a valuable testing ground for offshore construction, operations and maintenance and is today a hub for offshore innovation and development. Back in 2000, Blyth Offshore Wind Farm heralded the arrival of a new era of renewable technology which has seen the UK subsequently develop into a world leader in offshore wind.
Patrick Rainey, Offshore Technical Specialist at E.ON is leading the project and said: “Blyth Offshore Wind Farm holds a special significance for us all at E.ON as our – and the UK’s - first offshore development. Through Blyth, we were able to demonstrate to the watching world that the technology worked, and we’ve been able to use our experience and learning to go on to develop a further 1.5GW of wind capacity off the UK coast.
“Wind farms typically have a lifespan of around 20-25 years, and so Blyth Offshore Wind Farm has reached the end of its time. I think we can all be proud of the role it’s played in the renewable energy industry, and its legacy for the port and waters around Blyth.”
Members of the public interested in finding out more about the decommissioning plans are invited to join E.ON’s project team at a public information event taking place at the Port Training Services (near the Blyth Boat House, Quay Road) between 3pm and 8pm on 20 March.
E.ON expects to make use of local suppliers for as much of the decommissioning work as is possible, including waste disposal and crew transfer vessels. One of the turbines will be recycled and reused for spare parts within E.ON’s onshore fleet and the other is to be used by the Port of Blyth for training purposes.
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