Public input required for Irish offshore wind surveys

In: Windfarms
The Irish government have opened a consultation on SSE's license request to carry out site investigations for phase two of the Arklow Bank offshore wind farm.
SSE submitted a foreshore licence application in Autumn 2019 in order to undertake further surveys of the project area. The work scope includes:

Geotechnical Survey (Boreholes, Cone Penetration Testing, Vibrocores/Grab Samples)
Sediment Dynamic Suryeys
Wind Resource Measurement (Floating LiDAR)  

The geotechnical surveys will cover the array area, cable routes, land falls and potential in-harbour work and are intended to begin Summer 2020. The data collected will enable development of a detailed ground model and to gather refined information on the wind resource. In turn this will allow engagement with the supply chain, necessary for entrance to the RESS auctions.

The application documents are available for public consultation and submissions can be made to Marine Planning Policy and Development, Department of Housing, Planning, and Local Government until 17th April.

A foreshore lease was secured in 2002 for an area 27km long and 2.5km wide situated 13km off the Co. Wicklow coastline, to the east of Arklow.  The license permits the construction of up to 200 turbines with a minimum capacity of 520MW.

SSE intend on securing a grid connection in Q2 2020 and a RESS auction award in Q2 2021, with commencement of construction in 2022 in line with the timelines detailed in the Government’s Climate Action Plan.

The 25.2MW
Arklow Bank Wind Park Phase 1, which is owned and operated by GE Energy, was co-developed in 2004 by Airtricity and GE Energy as a demonstrator project and remains the first and only operational offshore wind farm in Ireland.

The entire Arklow Bank Wind Park project will be capable of generating around 1.75TWh of renewable electricity annually – enough green energy to power 420,000 homes and offset 640,000 tonnes of harmful carbon emissions annually

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