Peel Energy is considering expansion of the Scout Moor Wind Farm in Rossendale and Rochdale which could see the number of turbines double.
Peel has appointed Turley Associates as planning consultants, law firm Eversheds and Atmos, environmental consultants to carry out a detailed study of the potential to install more wind turbines within the existing wind farm area and in locations to the north and east of the existing turbines. There are currently 26, 2.5MW turbines at Scout Moor, which became operational in 2008.
Jon England of Peel Energy said: "There are a number of reasons why we are considering an expansion of Scout Moor Wind Farm: there is a proven high wind resource – there is existing access and grid connection; there is an opportunity to enhance security of electricity supply in Greater Manchester and the Rossendale Valley; and there are significant benefits for the area.
"Early studies have shown that there is sufficient land available to more than double the output of the wind farm. Further technical studies are underway to inform discussions with statutory consultees such as Natural England, interest groups, and local communities. These discussions will allow us to better understand the potential issues related to extending the wind farm and prepare firm proposals for the development."
Peel said if a wind farm extension were to take place, a substantial community benefit fund would be set up that could be accessed by the community to finance local projects and good causes.
A programme of public consultation will begin towards the end of the year. A planning application could be submitted within 18 months.