Centrica says that the UK's newest offshore wind farm has completed its construction phase and is only weeks away from full operation.

The 30th turbine on the Barrow Offshore Wind (BOW) project, four miles off the south Cumbrian coast, has been completed and will now see several weeks of commissioning before gearing up for full commercial operations in June 2006.

Barrow is the UK’s newest offshore wind farm and equal largest, representing an investment of over GBP100 million by its joint owners, British Gas parent company Centrica and Danish energy group DONG Energy.

The project will supply electricity to British Gas customers and is capable of powering 65,000 homes with green energy, as well as saving 200,000 tonnes of CO2 annually.

The Barrow wind farm is the first of several large scale renewable energy projects planned for the Irish Sea, which is one of three strategic zones laid down by the government for offshore wind farm development. The rectangular wind farm site covers 10 square kilometers of the East Irish Sea, consisting of four rows of turbines spaced 500 meters apart. The two section turbine towers, blades and nacelles were transported to site six at a time. Each turbine weighs 250 tonnes and stands 120 meters above sea level when the blades are vertical.

Not only is this is another milestone on the journey to secure the UK’s future energy needs, it underlines the significant investment to supply our British Gas customers with renewable electricity in the years ahead, says Jake Ulrich, managing director of Centrica Energy.