January 26, 2022

Campaigner misses chance for judicial review against huge wind farm project

Stuart Anderson | Eastern Daily Press | January 25, 2022 | www.edp24.co.uk

A campaigner against a massive wind farm planned for off the north Norfolk coast says he has missed the deadline to ask for a judicial review.

Ray Pearce, who lives near Reepham and has been campaigning against multiple cable trenches being dug through the Norfolk countryside, said he had missed the deadline to ask for a judicial review into Boreas, one of two wind farms planned by state-owned Swedish firm Vattenfall.

Mr Pearce said he was relying on the support of groups in the Wildlife and Countryside Link to make the appeal, as the main arguments against the wind farm and cabling plan going ahead in its current form were environmental.

He said: “The main issue was with the habitat regulations. I contacted everybody in the Wildlife and Countryside Link.

“We needed their support but they weren’t willing to take it forward.”

Mr Pearce said the deadline to appeal the government’s approval of Boreas was passed on January 21. But he said “the fight was not over” and vowed to keep campaigning for a review of other offshore wind farm plans.

Mr Pearce and others are fighting for wind farms to be linked at an offshore hub – sometimes called a ring main – so that multiple cable trenches would not have to be dug across the Norfolk countryside, rather than a trench being needed for each new project.

He said the other major concern was the size of the substation infrastructure at Necton, near Dereham, that would be needed to connect the cabling to the National Grid.

Mr Pearce said: “The fight isn’t over. People are just waking up to the impact of these things. I don’t think the loss of habitat and the impact on kittiwakes and other migrating seabirds has been fully felt yet, nor has the impact on the marine environment been fully understood.”

Vattenfall is still waiting on a Planning Inspectorate decision on its other planned wind farm, called Vanguard. A year ago Mr Pearce successfully challenged an earlier government decision to approve this project at the High Court.

At the time Danielle Lane, Vattenfall UK country manager, said: “We still very much believe that this is a good project which will help to combat the climate change crisis – and we have been reiterating this message to businesses in our supply chain which have been concerned about the judgement.”

URL to article:  https://www.wind-watch.org/news/2022/01/26/campaigner-misses-chance-for-judicial-review-against-huge-wind-farm-project/