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UK: Humber Gateway Offshore Wind Farm officially opened by Minister of State

E.ON’s Humber Gateway Offshore Wind Farm was today officially opened by Minister of State for Energy and Climate Change, Andrea Leadsom MP.

The 73 turbine wind farm, which is located 8km off the Holderness coast, went into full operation in May and will provide enough electricity for around 170,000 homes – equivalent to around one and a half times the size of Hull.

In February, a £2 million Community Benefit Fund was launched by E.ON to help make a positive difference to local communities close to the wind farm. From this fund, £100,000 has been donated to community projects across East Yorkshire, supporting sustainable projects in parishes which border the wind farm between Easington and Preston, ranging from improvements to facilities at a football club to increasing the number of rural internet connections in the area. A further £100,000 is to be made available next year.

E.ON has also committed to providing 10 apprenticeship roles over the next two years. The three year apprenticeship programme, which was launched in September, will provide learners with an Advanced Apprenticeship in Wind Turbine Operations and Maintenance. Five young people from the local area, aged between 17 and 21, have now started on the paid apprenticeship programme and will spilt their time between classroom learning and on the job training at the wind farm.

Energy Minister Andrea Leadsom, said: “This wind farm will give the local economy a major and sustained boost and will generate enough clean electricity to power more than 170,000 homes. Our priorities are to decarbonise our energy sector, keep bills down and the lights on and we need an energy mix that is built around diverse and home grown supplies. Offshore wind has a key role to play, which is why we’re the best place in the world to invest in offshore wind projects.”

The Minister, along with local MP Melanie Onn and Michael Lewis, Chief Operating Officer for E.ON Climate and Renewables, also officially christened the vessels serving the site. The Spirit of Hoton, the Spirit of Sunthorp and the Spirit of Turmarr, built by UK based Alicat Workboats, have been named after villages lost through coastal erosion along the Holderness coast. The vessels will be used to transport engineers, technicians and their equipment offshore to the turbines to carry out maintenance.

Michael Lewis, Chief Operating Officer for E.ON Climate and Renewables, said: “This opening marks a significant achievement for E.ON, as Humber Gateway becomes our fifth operational offshore wind farm in the UK and our eighth in total group-wide. Humber Gateway will play an integral role in helping the UK meet its energy needs and commitment to reducing carbon emissions. At a local level, 47 full-time roles have been created following the completion of the wind farm, which will be based at the Operations and Maintenance site, and we will continue to support local communities close to the wind farm through our Community Benefit Fund.

“We’ve gained a huge amount of knowledge and experience in the offshore wind sector, and we’re proud to be a market leader in terms of in terms of investment and capability. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank everyone that has been involved in the planning, development and construction process at Humber Gateway over the last 10 years.”

Over the last seven years, E.ON has invested almost 10 billion euros in renewable generation assets worldwide, and now has over 4200 MW of installed capacity globally, of which 925 MW is in the UK – enough to power over 514,000 homes.


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