Wind

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Octopus Energy Group has added £3.4 billion worth of renewable energy projects to its portfolio with the acquisition of sister company Octopus Renewables. From June the large retailer will manage Octopus Renewables’ European portfolio of more than 300 green assets under new business arm Octopus Energy Generation. Chris Hulatt, co-founder of Octopus Group, the parent company of both businesses, said he hoped the move would unlock a “multitude of new investment opportunities”.
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Crown Estate Scotland has raised the maximum option fees for its ScotWind offshore wind leasing round by ten-fold to £100,000/km². The decision follows a review of the arrangements that was launched after the winners in the Crown Estate’s fourth offshore wind leasing round for England and Wales agreed to pay option fees initially worth £879 million per year for almost 8GW of capacity its first competitive bidding process.
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Latest in Wind

The government has confirmed the fourth Contracts for Difference (CfD) allocation round will open to applications in December 2021, saying the announcement would “provide further clarity to prospective participants”. Alongside the announcement, the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy also published its response to a consultation on changes to supply chain plans and contract terms.
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The government should set a new target to double onshore wind capacity to 30GW by 2030, RenewableUK has urged. In a new report, the trade body set out detailed milestones for deployment of the different renewable technologies the UK will require to meet its new target to cut emissions to 78 per cent of 1990 levels by 2035.
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Six projects, representing 5.5GW of offshore wind, that were successful in the last Contracts for Difference (CfD) auction have now passed their “milestone requirement”. However, two of the projects that secured contracts in the October 2019 third allocation round have now had these agreements terminated after failing prove they were on track.
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Challenger energy supplier So Energy has signed two new power purchase agreements (PPA) worth an estimated £20 million.
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As part of our Countdown to COP series, Utility Week speaks to National Grid’s director of COP26, Duncan Burt. He discusses the need for leadership on both the strategies to get us to net zero and the behavioural changes that will be needed.
Interviews
As Scottish voters head to the polls on 6 May the prospect of the country’s independence is once again a subject of much debate. But how would a divorce from the rest of the UK impact the energy system, and the net zero ambitions on either side of the border? David Blackman investigates.
Analysis
The pipeline of renewable energy and storage projects either in development or under construction across Great Britain now stands at 86.4GW, analysis by Cornwall Insight has revealed. The consultancy said there has been a significant increase in the number of early-stage projects due to the offshore wind leasing rounds being undertaken by the Crown Estate and Crown Estate Scotland.
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Ovo Energy has entered into a power purchase agreement (PPA) with Orsted in a bid to further strengthen its renewable energy credentials. Ovo, which already provided 100 per cent REGO-backed renewable electricity, said it expected the deal to mean 13 per cent of its electricity will be generated via a PPA.
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Great Britain’s power grid saw its “greenest ever” moment on Easter Monday as low demand over the holiday weekend, combined with sunny spells and strong winds, allowed renewables to dominate the energy mix. National Grid Electricity System Operator said the carbon intensity of the power grid dropped to a new record low of 39gCO2/kWh at 1pm, with zero carbon sources providing nearly four fifths of electricity.
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The UK’s green economy suffered a slump in 2019, erasing most of the gains made over the preceding years, new figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) have revealed. The ONS estimated the number of full-time equivalent jobs in the low-carbon and renewable energy sectors at 202,100 – a 6 per cent reduction on the previous year’s estimate of 215,800.
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RWE has given the final go-ahead to its flagship 1.4GW Sofia offshore windfarm, representing a total investment of £3 billion. The company said onshore enabling works will begin this spring and offshore construction in 2023, with the project scheduled for completion in the final quarter of 2026.
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