SSE Renewables has submitted an application to the Government for a Maritime Area Consent (MAC) for Phase 2 of its Arklow Bank Wind Park offshore wind energy project.

Phase 2 of Arklow Bank Wind Park will be located in an area situated six to 13km off the Co Wicklow coastline, to the east of Arklow.

The development builds on the existing GE-owned seven turbines that comprise the operational first phase of the wind park.

It is targeting delivery of up to 800MW of installed offshore wind energy under the Government's new Maritime Area Planning (MAP) Act process.

This latest application is the next step forward in plans by SSE Renewables to progress this important offshore wind energy project for Ireland.

It follows the landmark decision by An Bord Pleanála to grant planning permission for the onshore grid infrastructure necessary to connect the 800MW Phase 2 of Arklow Bank to Ireland’s electricity transmission grid.

The offshore wind energy that can be generated at Arklow Bank would have the potential to power almost 850,000 homes each year and offset around 830 billion kilos of carbon emissions annually.

This will contribute significantly to Ireland's climate action target of at least 5GW of offshore wind energy by 2030, to Ireland’s security of energy supply, and to the national and local economy.

SSE Renewables said the offshore wind energy project is expected to require an investment of up to €2.5 billion and, under current planning timelines, is expected to deliver first power in 2028 and completion in 2029, subject to a final investment decision.

Barry Kilcline, Director of Offshore Development Ireland at SSE Renewables, said the company is committed to realising the full potential of offshore wind energy for Ireland.

"We are continuing to make substantial progress in the development of our plans at Arklow Bank. We have already secured planning permission for the project's onshore grid infrastructure, which is the first ever successful planning decision for any component of an offshore wind farm of scale in Ireland," Mr Kilcline said.

"With the submission of our MAC application for offshore infrastructure to the Irish Government, we are driving momentum in our project delivery and taking another step forward towards being able to submit a planning application to An Bord Pleanála to build out the next phase of Arklow Bank Wind Park," he added.