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France’s largest wind turbine is installed - at 167 metres tall

It comes as government plans to grow the country’s offshore wind power

The French government aims to make offshore wind the second largest source of electricity generation after nuclear Pic: Shutter Design/Shutterstock

Measuring 167 metres tall, the largest wind turbine in France has been installed at the entrance to the port of Boulogne-sur-Mer (Pas-de-Calais). 

The company InnoVent installed the new giant wind turbine in the commune of Le Portel and, with a capacity of 3.8 megawatts, it will replace the four smaller turbines that have been in operation here for 20 years. 

Two cranes were required to assemble the turbine with its 100 tonne generator and three 63 metre long blades. 

InnoVent said that the turbine was “installed on a tripod mast, a first in Europe” adding that “ the structure makes it possible to greatly reduce the quantities of steel and concrete necessary for its foundation while increasing production.”

Credit: Innovent/LinkedIn

InnoVent, which is based in Villeneuve d’Ascq, has positioned the turbine on the Quai de l’Europe, 700 metres away from the other existing wind turbines. 

The electricity produced will be integrated into the Enedis network, to supply the activities of the port of Boulogne-sur-Mer. Production could begin in December.

The growth of wind power

The French government will launch a huge call for tenders in 2025 for the installation of offshore wind farms, President Emmanuel Macron announced on Tuesday (November 28) during the Assises de l'économie de la mer in Nantes (Loire-Atlantique).

"A dozen wind farms will come into force in 2030-2035," President Macron said. 

The initial aim is to generate 10 GW of power, equivalent to the annual electricity consumption of 10 million households. 

Currently, France has 8 GW of offshore wind farms installed or planned. The goal is to reach 45 GW by 2050, making offshore wind the second largest source of electricity generation after nuclear power.

The President's announcements on Tuesday are part of the French Energy and Climate Strategy, which was put out for public consultation last week - for a period of one month - by the Minister of Energy Transition, Agnès Pannier-Runacher.

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