World’s largest windfarm opens off Cumbrian coast

Walney Extension, the world’s largest wind farm, has been officially opened, leap-frogging the London Array, which previously held the record.

The 659MW project in the Irish Sea has 87 turbines and is owned by energy company Ørsted and Danish pension funds PKA and PFA.

Matthew Wright, Ørsted UK Managing Director, said: "The UK is the global leader in offshore wind and Walney Extension showcases the industry’s  incredible success story.”

> Read Ørsted's announcement


Octopus Energy in acquisition deal

Affect Energy has been bought by rival Octopus Energy in a “seven-figure” deal.

Octopus will add Affect’s 22,000 customers to its own 350,000, which includes 95,000 former Iresa clients that transferred to Octopus under Ofgem’s arrangements following the collapse of the supplier.

Octopus has built 154 solar farms in the UK and a further 66 in France since 2011.

> Find out more about Affect Energy


EU gives green light to Shetland tidal scheme

The European Commission has approved Nova Innovation’s plans to proceed with the €20 million (£18m) “Enabling Future Arrays in Tidal” (EnFAIT) project.

The Edinburgh-based company and its eight European partners aim to prove tidal energy costs can be cut by 40%.

Nova operates the world’s first grid-connected offshore array of tidal energy turbines in Bluemull Sound off the Shetland Islands in Scotland.

> View Nova Innovation's announcement


UK boosts Chinese offshore wind ties

The UK’s Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult (OREC) has signed a deal to help set up a research centre at Yantai in China’s Shandong province.

The centre will support the installation of a 300MW offshore wind farm, using at least 10% of UK content.

The £2 million project will run for next three years.

> Read OREC's statement


Networks issue call for ideas

Up to £90 million of investment is up for grabs in the first “Call for Ideas” from the Network Innovation Competition.

The contest, coordinated by the Energy Networks Association, will involve successful applicants working with network companies to compete for up to £20m of funding for gas network projects and up to £70m for electricity network projects.

Phillip New, Chief Executive of Energy Systems Catapult, said: “This programme gives innovative companies the important chance to road test new ideas and trial them at scale.”

> See the ENA's announcement