UK trade body RenewableUK has announced that the phase one of the 630MW London Array has become completely operational.

The London Array, located in the Thames Estuary, employs 175 wind turbines and generates electricity, enough to power around half a million homes by reducing 900,000 tons of CO2 emissions annually.

RenewableUK chief executive Maria McCaffery said the London Array offshore wind farm is generating clean electricity to power British homes and businesses.

"To hold on to the UK’s global lead in offshore wind, it’s vital that we maintain this momentum. We must ensure that the crucial legislation going through Parliament right now – the Energy Bill – sets a rock-solid framework to encourage investment in renewables.

"If MPs get the details of the Bill right, we can unlock billions of pounds of investment for more flagship low-carbon projects like London Array, and create 76,000 jobs in the British wind industry by the dawn of the next decade," added McCaffery.

The turbines in the Thames Estuary were installed between January and December 2012, while the first power was generated in October 2012.