DONG Energy has taken full control of the huge Hornsea offshore wind zone, bringing a step-change in the area's renewables revolution ever closer.
The Hornsea Zone, within the Humber sailing corridor, forms one of the world's biggest offshore wind development projects, covering an area more than twice the size of Greater London.
Rights have been acquired from SMart Wind, a consortium of Mainstream Renewable Power and Siemens Financial Services, in an undisclosed deal.
It means the Danish giant, Grimsby's biggest offshore wind investor, will have project ownership for Hornsea Projects Two and Three, having already bought Project One in February. They have a combined potential for development of around 4.2GW of capacity, and the potential to supply the electricity needs of more than four million UK homes.
This would equate to more than 500 turbines, potentially more than 15 times the number deployed on the world leading Westermost Rough, built out of Grimsby, where all 35 of the largest commercially installed turbines are now operational.
The critical mass brings the anticipated huge job-creating investments on the South Bank of the Humber closer, with Dong having recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Able UK,to use the under-construction Able Marine Energy Park as an operations base.
It is set to encourage the clustering of the increasingly port-centric supply chain
Dong said the projects are now expected to form an important part of the business's post-2020 pipeline. Before that, the 580MW Race Bank is to be realised, following on from Westermost Rough, and again from Grimsby.
Brent Cheshire, Dong Energy's UK chairman, said: "The Hornsea Zone provides us with new and exciting development opportunities, not least because of the sheer size of the projects in terms of acreage and their high generation potential. This will also help us in our committed efforts to reduce the cost of electricity from offshore wind.
"With this acquisition we have the scope for continuing our growth within offshore wind and maintaining our position as global leader in this field beyond 2020.
"Dong Energy has already invested around £6 billion in the UK, most of it in offshore wind farm development. We expect to invest a similar amount by 2020.
"This announcement underlines our strong commitment to helping the UK deliver low carbon energy supplies while creating energy jobs and building a robust local supply chain."