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Consultation to start on wind farm expansion and new substation bid

Sheringham Shoal offshore wind farm. Its owner, Equinor, wants to expand it and another wind farm nearby called Dudgeon. Image: www.chpv.co.uk

Sheringham Shoal offshore wind farm. Its owner, Equinor, wants to expand it and another wind farm nearby called Dudgeon. Image: www.chpv.co.uk

CHPV Offshore Energy Media Services, Orbis Energy, Wilde Street, Lowestoft,NR32 1XH 0044 1502 0500272

Views on plans to expand two wind farms off the north Norfolk coast - and build a new substation near Norwich - are being sought by developers.

Norwegian energy giant Equinor wants to add 27 turbines to Sheringham Shoal wind farm and 34 turbines to Dudgeon, another wind farm a bit further out to sea.

They plan to have cabling coming ashore at Weybourne and running to the National Grid Norwich Main Substation, south of the city at Stoke Holy Cross. Equinor wants to build another substation close to that site to transfer its energy to the grid.

Kari Hege Mørk, project manager from the firm, said: “It’s really important to us to hear from the community at this early stage of the project, so that we can consider feedback from the local people as the projects develop.

“It’s a challenging time to engage as we can’t physically meet in person but we hope that the materials we have provided, including our virtual exhibition space, will give people enough information to be able to comment on our onshore plans.”

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Sheringham Shoal currently has 88 turbines and Dudgeon has 67. The expansion would bring their total capacity up to 1.44 gigawatts, enough to power 1.5 million UK homes.

The consultation period started this week and will run to August 20. The firm is particularly keen to hear views on the proposed location of the substation and cable corridor.

Comments can be made online at sepanddep.commonplace.is, and more information can be found at event.sepanddep.co.uk

More than 9,000 properties within one kilometre of the proposed cable corridor between the coast and the substation have also been sent out feedback forms.

Equinor plans to run further consultations next year, and make its final application to the Planning Inspectorate by the end of 2021.

It follows the government granting permission for another firm, Vattenfall, to build a new wind farm called Vanguard off the north Norfolk coast earlier this month.

Vattenfall’s UK offshore wind manager said it was a “great step forward in the battle against climate change”, but some community campaigners have objected to plans for more cable corridors and substations, and urged for alternatives to be considered.


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