Russian threat means no to Swedish offshore wind farm?
Swedish Government has finished a review of several wind farms, including
Offshore AB's project located 5km
off the south coast of Hanö, an Island near the Swedish Mainland.
Following its review the Government has decided to deny building permission
to for the Blenkinge project due to the site being contained within an
area of sea which is of strategic importance to the armed forces. Environment
Minister Carolina Forest explained
that if the site had been given approval military exercises would have
been reduced in the area, against the country's plans to strengthen its
Navy and Air Force.
The strengthening of the Swedish armed forces is in part a response to
what is seen as an ever growing threat from Russia. In early September
defence chief Nicael Bydén and defence minister Peter Hultqvist warned
the threat from the nuclear superpower was growing. Russian
jet fighters have been increasingly cutting through Swedish airspace during
training exercises in the Baltic, prompting an angry responses from the
Swedish government. It is thought that Sweden
has been moving closer to the NATO Western alliance through programs of
shared training and military equipment. Now
the Scandinavian country has deployed soldiers to Gotland island for the
first time in a decade. Sweden
maintained a permanent military garrison on Gotland until 2005.
There is no chance to appeal the decision confirmed Blekinge Offshore AB,
who began working on the project eight years ago. The proposal included
the installation of up to 700 turbines, between 3-6MW in capacity, across
a 200km2 area, with the possible expansion of a further 350
The Swedish Government plans to source 100 percent of its electricity from
renewable sources by 2040.