Centrica threatens to scrap £2bn windfarm

Centrica has signalled that it will abandon plans to construct its £2bn Race Bank offshore windfarm because of inadequate subsidies, according to The Telegraph.

The wind industry is concerned that the current strike price of £155/MWh for offshore wind, which will drop to £135/MWh in 2014, is not sufficient.

Centrica sources told the Telegraph the windfarm could have powered 450,000 homes but will not go ahead unless proposed subsidies are increased considerably.

It follows a warning last month from RWE that lack of clarity was threatening its proposed Galloper windfarm, off the coast of Essex.

A spokeswoman from industry body Renewable UK said: “These reports, if accurate, are very concerning. The offshore strike price degressions are extremely challenging to developers, and it was good to see [energy minister] Michael Fallon quoted over the weekend saying DECC would look at deployment based degression.”

Meanwhile, an offshore windfarm in Kent was today given the green light after Swedish power company Vattenfall confirmed it would invest £150 million into the project.

When operational in 2015, the 49.5 megawatt (MW) Kentish Flats Extension (KFE) will generate enough energy to power 42,000 households a year, in addition to the existing 30 turbine Kentish Flats offshore windfarm.

According to Peter Wesslau, Vattenfall’s UK Country Manager, the UK is “one of the most attractive places in Europe to invest in wind power”.

Vattenfall owns and operates the 90MW Kentish Flats, 300MW Thanet and the 150MW Ormonde offshore windfarms.