Crown Estate finishes initial screening of 3.4 GW offshore wind extension projects

Rampion turbines. Source: E.on UK plc (www.eonenergy.com)

October 4 (Renewables Now) - The Crown Estate has completed its initial assessment of the eight applications for offshore wind farm extension projects in the waters around England and Wales.

The eight projects represent a potential capacity of up to 3.4 GW and have all satisfied the application criteria, the seabed manager said.  

The Crown Estate will now move to the next phase of the assessment process, undertaking a plan level Habitats Regulations Assessment (HRA), which will look into any possible impact of the proposed extensions on relevant nature conservation sites of European importance. This is to be completed in six to nine months. Depending on the results, the applicants could be awarded agreements for leases in the summer of 2019. They would then begin project specific environmental assessments and follow the statutory planning process to obtain consents.

Below are the eight extension proposals: 

wind farm  proposed extension
Sheringham Shoal up to 317 MW
Dudgeon  up to 402 MW
Race Bank up to 573 MW
Greater Gabbard  up to 504 MW
Galloper up to 353 MW
Rampion  up to 400 MW
Gwynt y Mor  up to 576 MW
Thanet up to 300 MW (as announced in March 2018)

The Crown Estate announced in June the receipt of eight extension applications for up to 3 GW since February 2017, when the opportunity was launched. The deadline for applications was May 31, 2018. The locations of the extension projects can be seen at http://crownestate.maps.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=0a2d763ee5d34455b4142d53e19f58d8 

Today, the Crown Estate noted that it continues its work on the new offshore wind leasing process.

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Plamena has been a UK-focused reporter for many years. As part of the Renewables Now team she is taking a keen interest in policy moves.

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