A final decision on whether to go ahead with the world’s biggest offshore windfarm in the outer Thames Estuary will not be made until November.
Despite winning planning permission for the essential substation at Graveney, near Faversham, it will be eight months before the London Array consortium makes the final decision on the windfarm.
Peter Crone, director of the London Array venture, is confident, however, that the scheme will progress and predicts that three more windfarms, each bigger than the last, will be constructed in the Thames estuary or off the Kent coast.
He said the final decision would be based on economic factors such, as the cost of offshore turbines, which have doubled in price in recent years.
More than 270 turbines covering an area two-thirds the size of the Isle of Wight are planned, providing sustainable energy to meet the needs of Kent and East Sussex.
The National Grid has already begun work on the power lines across the Graveney marshes ready to take power from the windfarm.
The work would have to be reversed if the project does not go ahead.
If London Array decides to go ahead, the area could benefit from a £300,000 community fund, £200,000 for Kent Wildlife Trust, an educational package for Graveney Primary School, the Abbey School and Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School and a car park at Graveney Primary School.
by Liza Murley
20 March 2008
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