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Government awards £60m to floating offshore wind technology projects

Equinors Hywind Scotland floating wind farm. Image: Øyvind Gravås Woldcam.

Equinors Hywind Scotland floating wind farm. Image: Øyvind Gravås Woldcam.

Over £60 million in public and private investment has been awarded to 11 floating offshore wind projects.

The Floating Offshore Wind Demonstration Programme is designed to help to stimulate research and the development of areas such as mooring turbines to the seabed, undersea cabling and developing foundation solutions.

In doing so, the government hopes to boost the deployment of turbines in deeper waters than conventional turbines currently allow, helping the UK to reach renewable energy targets and increase energy security.

Projects have been awarded up to £10 million, with the government providing £31.6 million to the programme, funding which has been matched by industry.

“We are already a world leader in offshore wind and floating technology is key to unlocking the full potential of the seas around Britain,” energy minister Greg Hands said.

“These innovative projects will help us expand renewable energy further and faster across the UK and help to reduce our exposure to volatile global gas prices.”

The UK is targeting 1GW of floating offshore wind by 2030, as announced initially in prime minister Boris Johnson’s Ten Point Plan in 2020. To support this, £24 million a year was ringfenced within the fourth round of the Contracts for Difference auction for emerging technologies, including floating offshore wind.

Up to £160 million of government funding was also announced in November 2021, for developers and manufacturers looking to invest in UK large-scale floating offshore wind ports and factories.

The technology also secured more than half of the leasing agreements in the recent ScotWind round.

For more information on the winning projects, see here.

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