The Department of Energy and Climate Change’s (Decc) 'final investment decision enabling for renewables' (Fider) process is designed to enable developers to take final investment decisions ahead of the Contract for Difference (CfD) regime as part of Electricity Market Reform.
The seven sites include Dong Energy’s 258MW Burbo Bank off Liverpool Bay, its 4GW Hornsea off Yorkshire and its 750MW Walney Extension, off Cumbria. Mainstream Renewable Power’s 450MW Neart na Gaoithe project off southern Scotland.
Other sites are the 1GW Beatrice offshore wind farm off northern Scotland, the 400MW Dudgeon off eastern England and 905MW Inch Cape developments.
Sixteen renewable generation projects reached the next stage of Fider, which could be supported either through investment contracts or the CfD regime.
Decc's secretary of state Ed Davey said: "With sixteen new major renewable projects progressing in our "go early" stage we are delivering ahead of schedule and are able to begin the move to the worlds first low carbon electricity market faster than expected."
Projects that met the necessary criteria for Fider and will be invited to make binding applications.
The next stage will determine which projects will be offered investment contracts (an early form of CfD), where generators receive a fixed strike price for the electricity they produce.
The government announced new strike prices for on and offshore wind today.
Decc will start the final selection process later this month and will assess final applications against the available budget in spring 2014. Successful projects will then sign their contracts with Davey.
Twenty-six projects applied to Phase 2 of the FIDER process where they were assessed against criteria to make sure they were technically and financially viable. Decc launched FIDER in March 2013 and applications for participation closed on 1 July.