Concerned residents who are fighting proposals for a new wind farm have urged the public to sign a petition.
The plans for the Rampion 2 wind farm could see up to 116 turbines 325-metre-tall, the same height as the Eiffel Tower, placed off the West Sussex coast.
A petition has been launched by campaigners to stop the building of the turbines, which would be 2.35 times the height of Rampion1 turbines.
Zoe Visram is a member of the Middleton-on-sea Coastal Alliance (MOSCA), and she believes the farm will negatively impact the surrounding wildlife, environment and tourism.
The existing Rampion 1 wind farm combined with the proposed Rampion 2 extension will spread over an area of 342 sq km from Newhaven to Selsey Bill, a distance of almost 37 miles.
Zoe said: “It doesn’t take much imagination to appreciate the visual impact the installation of 116 Turbines up to 325m tall topped by flashing red beacon lights will have for residents and visitors, both from the shoreline and the South Downs National Park.
“We welcome wind farms that produce truly green energy, and having studied the proposals we have concluded the proposed Rampion 2 wind farm does not.”
According to the group the plans do not comply with government recommendations for new wind farms to be located at least 14 miles from shore.
The turbines will be built eight miles from shore in a “low wind area” and will not connect to the national grid through existing cable connections.
She added: “Right here on our doorstep we have a coastline which attracts thousands of visitors a year, a coastline with parts that have been given protected status by Natural England, with sites of Special Scientific interest.
“Are we to put this in jeopardy without question? The purpose of trying to save our planet is to keep hold of the ecological systems, natural habitats and environments which are at threat which we all cherish.”
Zoë says that several protected species at sea and on land would be affected, as well as the Sussex Kelp Forests.
Rampion stated that modern turbines can now generate three times the power output of Rampion 1. However Zoe says that placed further out to sea they would generate another 60 per cent more energy and protect the environment.
A spokeswoman for Rampion 2 said: “We held a nine-week public consultation for Rampion 2 earlier this year, with well over 12,000 visits to our online exhibition and we are currently working to accommodate feedback in our design change and mitigation planning process.
“It is the only wind farm proposed off the south coast of England and could quadruple our contribution to creating clean, renewable electricity to power over one million homes and reduce carbon emissions by around 1.8 million tonnes per year, in addition to Rampion’s existing generation.
“Modern wind turbines can now generate three times the power output of the original Rampion 1 turbines and we aim to maximise the advances in technology to generate more clean energy for the UK and south east.”
Rampion said it has assessed the “maximum theoretical siting” of turbines across the full search area but this is “not where we expect the project will end up”.
The spokeswoman added: “The proposed Rampion 2 will be at least as far offshore as the existing Rampion 1, which is eight miles to the nearest point.”
To sign the petition visit petition.parliament.uk/petitions and for more information go to www.mosca.click
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