RWE npower renewables has made further revisions to its project plans for Atlantic Array. The area for the wind farm, which is planned for a site off the Devon and south Wales coasts, has been further reduced, from 238km² to 200km². The maximum number of turbines has been cut from 278 to 240 and the project's maximum capacity will now be 1.2GW – 20% less than the previously planned 1.5GW.
The project plans were previously scaled back in May 2012. The latest changes follow analysis of the consultation undertaken last year, and the results of environmental and engineering studies. Scaling down the project will reduce its visual and seascape effects, as well as the potential for underwater disturbance during construction. Commercial fisheries, birds, navigation and the ecology of the seabed will also benefit from the refinements.
Craig Harwood, project manager for Atlantic Array, said: "The revisions to the proposed Atlantic Array wind farm are being made following the completion of additional studies and focus on the site boundary closest to Lundy and North Devon. They build on the changes we made in 2012 to minimise environmental effects, which also significantly reduced the visual effects from the south Wales coast."
RWE npower renewables now aims to submit a consent application to the Planning Inspectorate in June 2013.