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London gives offshore wind financial boost

March 1, 2013 at 6:14 AM

LONDON, March 1 (UPI) -- The British government said it was giving offshore wind energy a $3.4 million vote of confidence in a move to drive down costs by 25 percent.

The British Department of Energy and Climate Change announced it awarded three companies financial support for offshore wind innovations. London said wind energy would help advance a low-carbon economy, adding support for innovation would help the country cut the costs of offshore wind by 25 percent by 2020.

The funding would support High Voltage Partial Discharge Ltd. and JDR Cable Systems Ltd. improve designs for cable systems tied to offshore wind platforms. Principle Power (Europe) Ltd., meanwhile, is working on a floating-platform system that would eliminate the need for seabed foundations.

"This $3.4 million will give three more companies the boost they need to take their innovative designs to the next level, helping cut costs in offshore wind generation, and ultimately helping us harness more power from turbines out at sea," Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker said in a statement.

The wind announcement follows a decision by the British government to set aside $30 million to support the development of technology used to exploit marine energy. London said marine energy could meet as much as 20 percent of nationwide energy demand by 2050.

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