January 3 (Renewables Now) - The Hornsea One Ltd offshore wind farm, operated and co-owned by Denmark’s Ørsted A/S (CPH:ORSTED), has agreed to voluntarily pay GBP 4.5 million (USD 5.9m/EUR 5.3m) for not remaining connected after a lightning strike on August 9, 2019 triggered a widespread power outage in the UK.
The 1.2-GW wind farm, located 120 kilometres off the coast of Yorkshire, was still under construction at the time and had 800 MW installed and ready to export.
UK energy watchdog Ofgem determined Hornsea One’s role in the blackout, which left more than a million consumers without power, saying in its report on Friday that the wind farm’s two modules had then deloaded from 737 MW to zero, leaving only one to generate at 62 MW.
Ofgem’s investigation concluded that this happened after a fault on the transmission system caused by the lightning had been rectified.
Hornsea One also failed to communicate to National Grid Electricity System Operator (ESO) when the wind farm deloaded nor did it coordinate its process to start up the two modules.
The energy regulator said that the 740-MW Little Barford gas-fired power station, run by Germany’s RWE AG (ETR:RWE), would also voluntarily contribute GBP 4.5 million to its redress fund for its role in the loss of generation soon after the lightning strike.
UK Power Networks, a distribution network operator, will pay GBP 1.5 million for a technical breach of rules after it was found to be disconnecting and reconnecting consumers in its area of service without being cleared to do so by the ESO, Ofgem said.
(GBP 1.0 = USD 1.31/EUR 1.17)