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Green light for huge wind project

Hans Laubel | E+ | Getty Images

Europe's largest onshore wind power project will be built in Norway, the companies involved in the six wind farms' development announced Tuesday.

Renewable energy company Statkraft - which is owned by the Norwegian state - announced that it would collaborate with TrønderEnergi and Nordic Wind Power DA to build six sites with a capacity to generate 1,000 megawatts (MW).

Approximately 1.1 billion euros ($1.21 billion) will be invested in the project, with construction beginning in the second quarter of the year.

"This is an important day," Christian Rynning-Tønnesen, chief executive and president of Statkraft, said in a news release.


"Together with our partners, Statkraft has developed the largest renewable energy project in Norway… this millennium. With a 1000MW project, we become one of the leading onshore wind players," he added.

Statkraft added that the project is set to be completed and commissioned in 2020, with the wind farms generating 3.4 terawatt hours of power every year, enough renewable energy to "meet the needs" of roughly 170,000 households in Norway.

The wind farms will be owned by joint venture company Fosen Vind. Statkraft is to have an ownership interest of 52.1 percent in the company, with TrønderEnergi having a stake of 7.9 percent and Nordic Wind Power DA 40 percent. The latter is a European investor consortium formed by Credit Suisse Energy Infrastructure Partners and backed by BKW, a Swiss utility.

Wind energy is becoming increasingly important in Europe. The U.K. government recently announced that the world's largest offshore wind farm – which will have a capacity of 1.2 GW – is set to be built off the north coast of England.