DONG hires Thomson for Hornsea Three ecological studies
Thomson Ecology has been contracted by DONG Energy to undertake the Phase 2 ecological surveys to inform the Hornsea Project Three offshore wind farm onshore cable route environmental statement.

Over the next nine months, Thomson Ecology will be working closely with DONG Energy and its consultants to deliver the environmental survey support for the consent application for this key project, including surveys for bats, reptiles, great crested newts, badgers, otters, water voles, and white-clawed crayfish. The onshore cable route will connect the wind farm to the national grid at Norwich Main.

Gabrielle Graham, Principal Ecological Consultant at Thomson Ecology, said: “As a specialist in delivering complex, multi-species projects, we are delighted to be involved with this project and have some boots on the ground! We have been using Thomson Interactive Mapping to navigate around the site, monitor survey progress and undertake data quality assurance.”

According to DONG Hornsea Project Three has the potential to be a 2.4GW project that could provide enough power for well over two million UK homes, five times the number of homes in Norfolk.

The wind farm is to be located over 120km off the North Norfolk Coast in the North Sea, so will not be visible from shore. The cables connecting the turbines to the National Grid will be buried underground and will connect into the existing Norwich Main National Grid Substation, just south of Norwich. The project will also require a new onshore substation in the vicinity of National Grid's.

An application for development consent of Hornsea Project Three, under the Planning Act 2008, is expected to be submitted as early as 2018. If this is successful, construction of the offshore wind farm is anticipated to take place between 2022 and 2025.

Hornsea Project Three is part of DONG Energy's Hornsea Offshore Wind Zone, approximately 120km from the Yorkshire coast. The Hornsea zone was previously split into four areas allocated for offshore wind farm development: Hornsea Project One, Hornsea Project Two, Hornsea Project Three and Hornsea Project Four.

DONG Energy announced in February that it has taken a final investment decision to build the 1.2GW Hornsea Project One, which will be capable of powering well over 1 million UK homes. Offshore construction is anticipated to begin in 2018 with full commissioning as early as 2020.

Hornsea Project Two secured build consent in August 2016. If constructed the wind farm will have an installed capacity 1,800MW capable of meeting the energy demands of around 1.8 million UK homes.

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