UK

Lack of offshore wind in key auction deals blow to Government’s green promises

Offshore wind is a key part of the UK’s decarbonisation plans (Ben Birchall/PA)
Offshore wind is a key part of the UK’s decarbonisation plans (Ben Birchall/PA) Offshore wind is a key part of the UK’s decarbonisation plans (Ben Birchall/PA)

No new offshore wind farms have been commissioned in a key auction, dealing a blow to the Government’s hopes of greening the UK’s electricity production.

In the annual auction which lets companies bid to supply the grid with electricity, many onshore wind projects and solar farms bid to get a contract.

However, no offshore wind contracts, seen as the backbone of the UK’s green electricity ambitions, were included this year, the Government announced.

It puts a dent in ministers’ promise to deliver 50 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind by 2030, from 14 GW today.

Wind farm builders had warned for months that the Government was not taking into account how much their costs had soared during the cost-of-living crisis which has also pushed up prices for businesses.

Energy and climate change minister Graham Stuart said: “Offshore wind is central to our ambitions to decarbonise our electricity supply and our ambition to build 50GW of offshore wind capacity by 2030, including up to 5GW of floating wind, remains firm.

“The UK installed 300 new turbines last year and we will work with industry to make sure we retain our global leadership in this vital technology.”

One industry source said: “There is no offshore wind and that’s the backbone of our transition to clean energy and attempts to stop using gas, which must be a worry for Government.”