Dong Agrees to Buy Centrica’s Race Bank Wind Project Off Britain

Dong Energy A/S, the world’s biggest offshore-wind developer, agreed to buy Centrica Plc’s Race Bank project off eastern England as it pursues a goal to install 6,500 megawatts of turbines at sea by 2020.

Dong will pay 50 million pounds ($82 million) for the project, 27 kilometers (17 miles) off Norfolk’s coast, Centrica said today in a statement. Race Bank may have a capacity of as much as 580 megawatts once built, providing power for 450,000 U.K. homes. Dong confirmed the deal in a separate statement.

The Danish developer is expanding offshore wind development as it tries to reduce carbon emissions from its energy generation, which also includes gas-fired power. The Fredericia-based company plans to more than double offshore wind capacity from its current 2,600 megawatts by the end of the decade.

“Race Bank fits very well into our existing pipeline of offshore-wind projects and will contribute to the achievement of our strategic target,” Samuel Leupold, executive vice president of Dong’s wind division, said today in an e-mailed statement. It “underlines our commitment to the U.K. market.”

The Race Bank project already has most of the permits it needs for construction and operation, and building may begin in 2017, Dong said. The wind farm wasn’t included on a U.K. government list last week of projects qualifying for early contracts to get guaranteed power prices under a new law.

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