When completed, Dudgeon will provide renewable energy for up to 410,000 households in the UK. The Dudgeon development will now move into a new phase, starting with construction of onshore cables and an onshore substation. Offshore construction will start in 2016.
"With today's investment decision, we have once again proven Statoil's ability to create value within the offshore wind business by utilizing 40 years of leading competence and experience from complex oil and gas industry projects. This is in line with our commercial and stepwise approach to renewable energy development," says Statoil executive vice president Eldar Sætre.
The total investment in Dudgeon is estimated to be £1.5 billion (NOK 15 billion).The Dudgeon owners are preparing for a partnership structure reflecting this investment level. Statoil's investment is expected to be NOK 5.5 billion after the partnership structure has been finalized.
"We are very satisfied to have reached a positive decision for Dudgeon. This strengthens and confirms Statoil's strategic ambition of gradual and profitable growth as an industrial offshore wind player. Dudgeon represents a strong partnership with broad experience and expertise within the energy sector and offshore wind," says Statoil's senior vice president for the renewable energy cluster, Siri Espedal Kindem.
"We believe this project could further strengthen our position in the UK, benefiting from the positive and constructive dialogue already established with UK authorities, local communities and suppliers. Building on the Sheringham Shoal experience, we now look forward to a progressive dialogue with key stakeholders such as the Norfolk public community, the local supply chain and the authorities."
Combining Statoil's offshore competence with Statkraft's experience with large renewable energy projects will generate value for owners, suppliers and UK industry as a whole.
The Dudgeon investment could provide benefits for the UK's offshore wind industry. At least 70 local jobs will be created directly in the operations phase and additional jobs during construction and indirectly in the supply chain.
"Today's decision underlines the success of our new contracts and will bring about a steady stream of investment in renewable electricity. As the best place in the world to invest in offshore wind, the UK is attracting millions of pounds of investment, supporting hundreds of local green jobs and strengthening its energy supply with home-grown sources. We have already attracted £34 billion of private sector investment in renewable electricity since 2010, with the potential to create almost 37,000 jobs in the UK," says UK energy minister Michael Fallon.