Delay for Atlantic Array application

Developer ‘needs more time’ to consider feedback before submitting planning application for offshore wind farm.

PLANS for a giant offshore find farm in the Bristol Channel will not be submitted until spring next year, developer RWE npower has announced.

The company was expected to submit its application to the Planning Inspectorate in December this year but said it needs more time to consider feedback generated by their most recent consultation.

Craig Harwood, Atlantic Array development manager, said: “The latest consultation period closed on August 31 this year, but we received a number of responses from statutory bodies, interested parties and the public after this date.

“In order to give reasonable consideration to all the responses we have received, both during the consultation period in the summer and afterwards, we’ve decided to submit the planning application during the spring of 2013.

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“This will mean we can consider all of the feedback thoroughly before submitting our application.

“We would like to thank everyone who has taken the time to join in with our consultation on the Atlantic Array Offshore Wind Farm.”

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Steve Crowther, spokesperson for campaign group said: “I am not surprised that the developer has postponed its application following the volume of opposition it has encountered both during the consultation period, and subsequently.

“Hundreds of people made their feelings known back in August, and opposition to the scheme in both North Devon and South Wales is growing all the time.

“We suspect that the postponement is because the developer is trying to come to terms with the representations from the major environmental organisations, such as the National Trust, CPRE and AONB Trust, which clearly showed that the Bristol Channel location is unsuitable for this development, by the Government’s own stated standards.

“It may also be that the increasing problems that the big continental utility developers are having raising finance for these massive schemes has led to them deciding to take a step back and see how the land lies.

“I’d advise them to cut their losses and go home. The environment for building a vast turbine field off Lundy is not going to get any easier over the next few months.

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