The Crown Estate has set out further details of a new leasing round for three commercial-scale floating wind farms in the Celtic Sea.
The new wind farms, located off the coast of South Wales and South West England, will have a combined capacity of up to 4.5GW and have the potential to deliver renewable energy for more than four million homes.
Round 5 will be the first time floating wind farms will been deployed on a commercial scale.
The Crown Estate has also published an Information Memorandum that includes details of a series of contractual commitments for developers to create positive social and environmental impacts, focused on skills and training, tackling inequalities in employment, environmental benefits and working with local communities.
Bidders will also be required to demonstrate commitments for the timely access to the port infrastructure needed to successfully develop their projects.
The Crown Estate has commissioned new research, due to be published in the new year, to provide a view on how best to maximise the economic and social benefits arising from Round 5 and the longer-term sustainable development of the offshore wind industry.
It has also outlined its intention to bring forward a new pilot fund to help accelerate supply chain projects, with an initial focus on opportunities arising from Round 5.
Energy Security and Net Zero Minister Graham Stuart said: “Floating offshore wind is a huge opportunity for Wales and the South West, with the potential to deliver billions of pounds of direct investment whilst bolstering our energy independence and net zero ambitions.
“Today’s plans will build on the government’s ambition to deploy up to 5GW of floating offshore wind by 2030. Together with The Crown Estate I look forward to bringing more capacity online, through our plans to see up to 16GW deployed in the Celtic Sea through the 2030s.”