Belgium receives €438m for offshore wind farm

Belgium is receiving €438 million (£363.5m) to support the construction of an offshore wind farm. The European Investment Bank (EIB) is providing the money which will be used to develop […]

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By Jacqueline Echevarria

Belgium is receiving €438 million (£363.5m) to support the construction of an offshore wind farm.

The European Investment Bank (EIB) is providing the money which will be used to develop the €1.1 billion (£0.91bn) Norther wind farm, off the Belgium coast.

It will consist of 44 turbines which will have an estimated capacity of 352MW – enough to supply around 324,000 homes.

The project will use one of the largest offshore wind turbines in the world, with a capacity of 8MW, which can be increased by 5% if wind conditions allow for it, according to the EIB.

The wind farm will also cut around 593000 tonnes of CO2 per year.

Construction of the offshore wind farm is set to begin in spring next year and is expected to be operational in summer 2019.

It is estimated to support 2,500 jobs during the construction phase and a further 16 full-time positions once operational.

EIB Vice President Pim van Ballekom said: “Renewables are a long term goal for the EIB and this signature shows that Belgium is serious about making the shift away from carbon-based energy production. In the last five years the EIB has invested over €880 million in wind energy projects in Belgium to ensure a safe, affordable and diversified supply for a large portion of the Belgian population.”