Queen Elizabeth's estate has bought a 100-metre off-shore wind turbine, described as the world's largest. The move will encourage energy firms to invest in renewable energy, it is hoped.
The Crown Estate, which manages the Queen's assets on behalf of the nation, purchased the Clipped Windpower MBE turbine prototype, codenamed Project Britannia.
AdvertisementIt is currently under construction at Clipper's Centre of Excellence for Offshore Wind in Blyth, Northumberland.
The Crown Estate has the right to lease seabed for the generation of renewable energy up to 200 nautical miles off shore. It will hold its third seabed auction later this year.
Successful bidders at previous auctions, held in December 2001 and July 2003, had trouble securing enough turbines because the technology was so new.
The estate will also gain firsthand knowledge of the challenges faced by companies developing turbines on its land.
Rob Hastings, Director of the Marine Estates at The Crown Estate, believes the estate's support will speed up the development of wind turbines.
He said: 'We believe that our support for the Britannia project will drive forward the development of turbine technology designed for the challenges of the offshore environment.
'This is an important step in the future of offshore wind and a great opportunity to help establish a new industrial base of activity to advance the UK's leadership in renewable energy.'
James Dehlsen, Chairman and CEO of Clipper Windpower, said: 'We are very pleased to be working with The Crown Estate to realise this exciting project.'
The expected completion date and cost of the project have not been released.
The UK aims to supply 15 per cent of its energy from renewable sources by 2020, reports Daily Mail.