A 250 turbine wind farm planned to be built about 10 miles offshore in Wales has just been approved. The project will (hopefully) begin feeding electricity to the grid in 2012, and will have a peak power production of 750 MW, enough to power around 680,000 Welsh homes.
The project was approved by the new Department of Energy and Climate Change. This agency has some pretty unprecedented power in terms of approving renewable energy projects. Though there was some concerns among local citizens about the “visual impact” of the farm, the DECC fast-tracked the project without approval from the locals.
This is, of course, what the UK needs to do in order to achieve their targets for renewable energy. Here in America, where we’ve been arguing for almost a decade about whether or not to put wind turbines off the coast of Cape Cod, we might do well to learn a lesson or two from the UK.
Adding this project to other planned and approved farms will give the UK a total of 4.5 gigawatts of new power from renewable sources. Of course, that still won’t be enough to meet their goals, but it’s certainly a good start.