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BP, Shell (RDSa.L) and utility Iberdrola (IBE.MC) were among the winners of seabed rights to develop Scottish offshore wind projects, in an auction which raised nearly 700 million pounds ($958 million) for public spending.

Competition for offshore wind sites has intensified as governments and investors have woken up to the urgency of cutting carbon emissions, with oil majors making high bids.

Crown Estate Scotland, which manages the Scottish seabed, said on Monday that proceeds from the first such leasing deal in around a decade will go to the devolved Scottish government.

The 17 winning Scottish projects will produce nearly 25 GW in the next decade, helping to provide low-carbon power in line with a UK-wide goal to cut emissions to net zero by mid-century.

A gigawatt equates to roughly two coal-fired power plants and is enough to power 750,000 homes in Britain, where the overall power demand can be between 20-47 GW per day, depending on the season. Around 35% of the country’s electricity generation is already generated from renewables.

[Nina Chestney]

More: Scottish wind sale nets nearly $1 billion with Shell, BP among winners

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