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Offshore Energy Generation

An interesting statistic that not many people are aware of is that by 2020 more than a quarter of the energy in the UK's electricity supply will come from offshore generators.

And the forms of energy that will be produced from those offshore generators will be energy from the wind, wave and tidal power.

Offshore wind turbines are a very big engineering challenge however. They need to be very large with large blades and are built on a huge scale. They also need to be installed of course, so there is a huge challenge in getting them set up. They are going to cost a lot.

So why build offshore? Well there are a couple of compelling reasons. One of these is of course that people don't like looking at windfarms, the idea being not in my back yard, or NIMBY.

But even more importantly, there is the guarantee of actually getting energy generated if the wind turbines are off shore where there is always a high amount of wind which means that there is a lot of energy to harness by turning the huge blades and using that to generate electricity.

Wave power is another form of offshore energy generation but it hs been put on hold in the past because it has proven unreliable and difficult to harness enough energy from it in a cost effective way.

There are some potential difficulties - such as underwater rotors being dangerous for sea life and of course above the waves it is known that seabirds can be threatened by wind farms.

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