Energy minister Lord Bourne today announced development consent has been refused for the proposed Navitus Bay offshore wind park in Dorset.
Andy Taylor, vice president for energy at Schneider Electric commented: “The curtailment of an infrastructure project at such a late stage is disappointing. The investment of time and resource in pre-planning and design work will have been significant, as the rights to develop this Round 3 wind farm were awarded in 2010. This curtailment could act as a hammer blow to future infrastructure projects, by sending very mixed messages to investors.
“New sources of renewable energy production must be encouraged to ensure we avoid a future energy crunch. The margin of available capacity at the National Grid sat at 6.1% in 2014 and this is set to reduce even further, raising concerns over blackouts and possible rationing in winter months. Just 9.5% of the UK’s electricity was generated by on and offshore wind in 2014. Yet, much more green energy production is possible.
“Navitus Bay would have created a sea load of renewable energy for the south coast. All indications put the predicted figure for generated electricity at 3.0 terawatt hours (TWh) per year. That is enough to power 700,000 UK households. And, would have ensured that approximately 1,290,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide were offset.
“In proposed projects like Navitus Bay we are seeing the cost of wind production come down, which is great for the economy. New innovations in technology are now able to reduce the Levelised Cost of Wind Energy from approximately £140 per MWh, down to £100. It would be great to see a project like Navitus Bay get off the drawing board.”