Vattenfall has revealed early plans for the Norfolk Vanguard offshore wind farm, including its decision to bury around 50km of onshore transmission cables under ground.
After coming to an agreement with National Grid, Vattenfall plans to bring power from the 1.8GW offshore wind farm, located 47km offshore at its nearest point, to the shore between Bacton and Eccles-on-Sea. The company will then run an underground cable approximately 50km from shore to connect it to the existing National Grid’s substation near Necton.
Vattenfall has identified a wide search area for the cable route and will seek advice on the best route and potential locations for infrastructure, such as a cable relay station and project substation, during consultation with local people.
The Swedish company, which launched the Norfolk Vanguard project in March, is seeking views from technical specialists, local authorities, public agencies and local people about the scope of assessment that will support understanding of the project’s environmental impact.
The outcome of the Environmental Impact Assessment and future consultations will help shape the final consent application before it is submitted for examination by the Planning Inspectorate. The Secretary of State for Energy would then make a decision on whether to consent the project, likely by the end of this decade.
This week, the wind energy company has sent more than 20,000 newsletters to people living in north Norfolk, inviting them to seven public information days to discuss the plans and the scope of the assessment.
Ruari Lean, Vattenfall’s Senior Project Manager for the Norfolk Vanguard proposal, said: “We are at the early stages of developing Norfolk Vanguard. There will be lots of opportunity for local people to shape how the offshore wind farm, including the onshore infrastructure, will look. We want to hear from as many people as possible this month and in the future.
“We hope though that people will agree with us that undergrounding the 50km onshore cable route is the right decision as it minimises the wind farm’s impact. We want to add value in Norfolk and for us knowing the best way to do that – whether its good design decisions or investment opportunities – contributes to the best outcome for Norfolk.”