15/06/15

EDF Energy Renewables will be carrying out site investigations within the area of its planned Blyth Offshore Demonstration Project during June.

There are two key areas of work planned, geophysical, by EGS (International), Ltd, which looks at the sea bed and geotechnical, by GEO (Denmark), which will drill boreholes into the seabed to understand rock formation.

Two specialist vessels, the Blue Beta and the Morven, will carry out the surveys at the proposed site for the turbines and the route the wind farm’s electricity cable will take to shore. The site surveying and subsurface sampling are expected to be complete by the end of June. 

Mark Lawson Blyth Offshore Windfarm Project Manager, said: “These surveys will help us to characterise the site to provide all the required information to inform our engineering design and construction plans for the project.

“The surveys are being undertaken ahead of a final investment decision on building the wind farm, which is expected later this year.”

Local fishermen and mariners have been given the relevant notices on the work and EDF Energy Renewables has also agreed, with the Marine Management Organisations (MMO) and Natural England, to carry out local environmental monitoring during the surveys.

Measures include the use of a fully trained observer who will monitor the presence of marine mammals such as dolphins and seals, during the survey work.

It is the intention to complete the surveys before July/August which is when the numbers of white beaked dolphins in the waters near the site are known to be at their highest. 

The scheme, for up to 15 turbines generating a maximum total of 99.9 megawatts, was approved on October 2013 and if the final investment is approved the site will be built by Blyth Offshore Demonstrator Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of EDF Energy Renewables.