The huge Norfolk Boreas wind farm has been given the green light by the UK Government.
Swedish developer Vattenfall said the development has potential to power almost two million UK homes, and is now cleared for construction which is expected to begin in 2023.
More than 80 parish councils across Norfolk had banded together in objection to the wind farm over concerns to the environment, towns and villages as underground cable works get underway.
Vattenfall said the 1.8gigawatt (GW) project, 45miles from shore, will bring a “wealth of supply chain opportunities” to the region.
A sister project, Norfolk Vanguard, is still awaiting consent. Each project could have between 90 and 180 turbines.
Danielle Lane, country manager for Vattenfall said: “This announcement and decision is a multi billion pound boost to the UK’s climate change progress, and keeps the East of England at the forefront of the green energy revolution.
“There will be a wealth of supply chain opportunities for companies, as well high skilled green jobs, coming directly to Norfolk. This project, alongside its sister project Norfolk Vanguard will be a world leading example of what well-coordinated energy delivery looks like, whilst making sure that low cost renewable energy is produced for UK consumers.”
Vattenfall said it will start work with local communities in the new year.
Simon Gray, executive director of policy and external affairs at the East of England Energy Group (EEEGR), said: “This is a fantastic decision for our climate, for jobs, for the future of green energy, for our ports and for the supply chain and skills providers that will supply the equipment and skills to allow these wind farms to generate clean energy for decades to come.
“Whilst we understand the concerns of protestors to the cable routes and sub stations this decision had to go ahead to meet the governments commitment to the production of 40GW of offshore wind energy by 2030. We can now work on developing the technology and changes to legislation that will eventually develop the offshore infrastructure to allow for the potential construction of some form of offshore grid.”
RenewableUK chief executive Dan McGrail said the move would bring “massive benefits” to East Anglia.
He added: “Giving the green light to a major renewable energy project like Norfolk Boreas takes us another step closer towards the UK’s net zero emissions target. It’s particularly timely in the year of COP26, which demonstrated the global demand to move faster on action to tackle climate change.”