An offshore wind farm project off the coast of Sussex has received a £1.3bn investment from E.ON and UK Green Investment Bank.
The investment will allow the construction of the 400MW Rampion Offshore Wind Farm to commence, possibly providing up to 450 new jobs during the construction phase and 65 full time permanent positions in operations and maintenance.
The 72 square kilometre wind farm with 116 turbines is expected to generate sufficient power for about 300,000 homes and reduce carbon dioxide emissions by up to 600,000 a year.
"This is an important milestone for what is a strategically important project for the UK,” said E.ON UK Chief Executive, Tony Cocker. “At around £1.3bn this investment by E.ON and our partners at the Green Investment Bank could be one of the biggest capital projects confirmed in Britain this year and we are proud of the leading role we are continuing to take in helping to transform the UK's energy infrastructure."
Construction of the facility, to be located some 13 kilometres off the coast of Sussex, will start in early 2016 with completion planned for 2018. In June this year, E.ON will launch construction of the Twineham onshore substation, followed by preparation works for the onshore cable route.
E.ON will hold local community meetings to provide information for residents about the planned activities. The information will be made public to keep local communities involved.
The Rampion project remains set to become the first offshore wind farm off the south coast of England and is believed to be the first UK Round 3 project to enter construction.
Energy and Climate Change Secretary Amber Rudd said: "This huge investment is a vote of confidence in the UK, creating local jobs, bringing business opportunities and providing clean, home-grown energy."