East Anglia Offshore Wind, a joint venture owned 50:50 by ScottishPower Renewables and Vattenfall, is holding a second series of consultations regarding the required onshore work for East Anglia ONE, an offshore wind farm 43km off the coast of Suffolk.
East Anglia ONE will consist of up to 325 offshore wind turbines to provide an installed capacity of around 1,200MW – enough electricity to power the annual needs of more than 800,000 homes.
To connect the proposed offshore wind farm to the national grid system, approximately 70km of offshore cable route and 37km of onshore cable route is required. An onshore converter station adjacent to the existing substation at Bramford will also be required.
ScottishPower Renewables and Vattenfall outlined their plans to bury the cables last year. This was followed by a second round of consultation in February this year, which included details of the refined route.
This stage of the consultation aims to provide local communities along the cable route with further details on the proposed route, building on the public consultations in February this year. Specifically, there will be information on the cable routing proposed, and the proposed construction methods. Project engineers will be on hand to discuss their plans on the following days:
- Tuesday 3 July 1–7pm Woodbridge Library, 4 New Street, Woodbridge IP12 1DT
- Wednesday 4 July 1–7pm Bramford Church Rooms, Bramford IP8 4AL
- Thursday 5 July 1–3pm and 6–8pm Bawdsey Village Hall, The Street, Bawdsey, Woodbridge IP12 3AH
Andy Paine, Programme Director at East Anglia Offshore Wind, said: “To reduce the visual impacts of the work, we have already established that all onshore cables will be undergrounded and the converter station will be located adjacent to the existing substation at Bramford.
“We have now been able to develop our plans beyond the initial route corridors that we were investigating, and we have made every effort to minimise any potential impacts for communities surrounding the cable route. We have also been working closely with a range of environmental organisations to ensure that our work will not adversely affect wildlife in the area.
“We look forward to speaking to as many members of the community as possible, as all comments and feedback are important to developing our plans.”
Progress of the consultation and feedback so far includes:
- Having initially identified the Preferred Onshore Cable Corridor and associated landfall at Bawdsey, a review of technical and environmental constraints within the Corridor was undertaken.
- The review led to the majority of the southern area of the preferred landfall location being considered unsuitable for both construction techniques given the presence of:
- Extensive areas of woodland that would need to be permanently cleared in order to facilitate both the landfall and associated onwards cable construction;
- The presence of Bawdsey Manor;
- The presence of large former MoD premises which prevent the use of non open cut techniques due to subterranean ‘bunker’ type features; and
- The presence of cliffs and high sea walls
- In some instances, the process of refinement has resulted in minor deviation outside the initial preferred onshore cable route. Furthermore, a number of revisions have been made to achieve a more rational and direct route which avoids unnecessary land take and reduces impact on farming activities.
- The Preferred Onshore Cable Route made wide allowances for routes to be found in the areas of the Seckford Golf Club and Waldringfield Golf Club. Following discussions with landowners, alongside the consideration of technical requirements and available engineering solutions, routes were identified that avoid both golf courses.
- In order to mitigate the visual impacts of proposed converter station halls, visual impact modelling using the detailed ground contour information was re-run to identify areas that should be prioritised to provide additional screen planting. As a result of this, the need to complement existing woodland and to provide a continuous visual screen has been identified as suitable measures to mitigate the visual impact of the proposed converter station halls and outdoor equipment.
For more information on: ScottishPower