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Wind farms ‘a risk in busy Irish Sea’ – Manx ferry boss  

Credit:  Nov 12, 2022 bbc.com ~~

Plans for two offshore UK wind farms could risk maritime safety in a “busy part of the Irish sea”, the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company boss has said.

Brian Thomson raised concerns the Morgan and Morecambe proposals would not only affect ferries, but cruise ships and other marine operators.

The energy companies behind the farms previously said they could find “ways to co-exist” in the Irish Sea.

Mr Thomson said current plans were a “potential threat” to key sea routes.

Officers from the Steam Packet and the Department of Infrastructure (DOI) have attended workshops held by BP, German energy firm EnBW, Spanish company Cobra and Scottish wind power developer Flotation Energy.

The four are consulting on their plans for two separate offshore wind farms which fall on the Isle of Man Steam Packet’s routes to Liverpool and Heysham.

‘Early stage’

Infrastructure Minister Chris Thomas said the Manx government was doing “everything we can to make sure our interests are heard and actually secured”.

He added: “This is still at quite an early stage in the UK planning process.”

The wind farms are intended to deliver renewable energy to the equivalent of two million homes in the UK, the developers have said.

Mr Thomson said the Steam Packet was not against the farms but said there were “not a lot of positives there for the travelling public or our freight customers”.

The firm previously explained its rough weather routes would be affected by the plans, leading to more cancellations and delays disrupting food supply and passengers.

Any proposal for a corridor between the farms would “need to be wide enough for all the maritime transport in that part of the Irish sea”, he added.

“I think the smaller you make that corridor, the closer ships get to each other and the likelihood of an accident increases.”

Source:  Nov 12, 2022 bbc.com

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The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher indicated. As part of its noncommercial effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

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