West-Rijn will consist of up to 72 wind turbines with a potential total energy output of 260 MW. Located 40 km off the Dutch North Sea cost and 90 km from Rotterdam, the windfarm could make a “major contribution” to the Dutch national target of 6 GW of offshore wind capacity by 2020.
According to SSE, the focus will now be on the final phase of the development process securing financial support from the Dutch government through its renewables support mechanism ('SDE').
Paul Dowling, Chief Executive of Airtricity says: “This is a major achievement for SSE in particular and for the Dutch wind energy industry in general, being the first offshore wind farm to be consented in the Netherlands for almost seven years. The Dutch market is an important new area for SSE's renewable development team and West Rijn is the first in a number of projects […].”
SSE has 3,500 MW of renewable energy capacity (onshore wind, offshore wind, hydro and dedicated biomass) in operation, under construction or with consent in the UK and Ireland. Its target is to have 4 GW in operation in the UK and Ireland by the end of 2013.
It also has consent for a 300 MW offshore wind farm in Germany and is developing further offshore windfarms in the Netherlands and Germany and onshore windfarms in Italy, Portugal and Sweden.