RWE rows back on windfarm size

A proposed sister operation to the Gwynt y Mor offshore site off the North Wales coast has been halved in scale, to a maximum of 50 turbines.

Initial plans tabled by RWE Renewables were for a maximum of 91 turbines. Following consultation, this has now been reduced to 35 to 50 turbines, with the final number to be determined by how large the turbines can be.

This will mean that Awel y Mor, to be built around 10km to the north of Llandudno to the immediate west of Gwynt y Mor, will be able to power around 500,000 homes per year, pending consent.

The consultation process for the 100MW-plus proposal has also led to a reduction in the overall area to be taken up by the offshore array, which will now be a maximum of 78 sq km, a reduction  of 10 sq km on the previous figure, and 26% below that originally put forward.

Awel Y Mor Doc

RWE noted that another area “of great interest” in the consultation had been the landfall plans, which had included two transition jointing bays (where marine and onshore cables meet) and a temporary construction compound within the grounds of Rhyl Golf Club.

The compound will now be located offsite, and while cabling still needs to cross the golf course, this will be done by a trenchless method, such as horizontal directional drilling, meaning access required will only be temporary.

A full application is expected in spring 2022. As the scheme is of a scale regarded as nationally significant, a development consent order will be required before work can start.

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