The Crown Estate has predicted that 2017 will be the busiest year for the offshore wind industry since 2010.

The seabed owner’s latest report revealed 1,463 offshore wind turbines were operational in UK waters by the end of 2016, with a further 830 turbines under construction and seven sites expected to reach first power before Christmas.

Huub den Rooijen, Director of Energy, Minerals & Infrastructure at The Crown Estate, said:

“2016 has been another strong year for the UK offshore wind sector, as demonstrated by this latest report, which helps open up some of the key lessons and trends from the past year, further arming the industry as it strives to take best advantage of the UK’s world-class offshore wind resource."

“Together with the conclusions of the latest Contracts for Difference (CfD) round in the months ahead, this report offers growing evidence of offshore wind’s competitiveness as a low-carbon energy resource.”

New investors

The report also hailed the “significant investment in operations and maintenance bases across a number of the UK’s regional ports and harbours”.

The Crown Estate said the expansion of the industry was bringing local investment and was creating jobs.

It also highlighted the entry of corporates and pensions funds as investors at earlier stages in the construction process.

> Download the report