The National Trust has spoken out against the proposed Atlantic Array wind farm for the second time calling the project “alarming”.
The statement from the charity which owns Lundy Island and large parts of the North Devon coast comes after RWE Renewables, the company behind the proposed wind farm, released its draft environmental impact assessment last month.
If the wind farm is permitted, there could be up to 278 turbines in the Bristol Channel, measuring 165m or the amount could be reduced to 188 turbines, but their height would increase to 220m. The development would be 14km from Woolacombe and 13km from Lundy.
The statement said the National Trust had made no objection to other offshore wind farms including Liverpool Bay, visible from Formby and at Great Gabbard, visible from Orfordness, Suffolk.
The charity also stressed it was committed to reducing its own carbon footprint and was not against wind energy. It said it had reduced its footprint by 41 per cent since 2009. But in the case of the Atlantic Array, the National Trust has serious reservations.
The statement said: “The proposals recently announced for the Atlantic Array in the Bristol Channel are very alarming. The huge array of turbines, each up to 50 per cent taller than the highest point of Lundy, and only 8 to 10 miles from land, will fundamentally change the views from both the North Devon and Gower coastlines. They will dominate the seascape around Lundy and will introduce an industrial scale development to this beautiful, wild coastline.”
The National Trust will press the National Infrastructure Directorate to look very carefully at whether the Atlantic Array is compliant with the Strategic Environmental Assessment and call on the Crown Estate and Departmet of Energy and Climate Change to work with the Marine Management Organisation to consider alternative locations.