Regulator "minded to refuse" Triton Knoll appeal

UK: The UK's energy regulator Ofgem has said it is "minded to refuse" RWE permission to enter private land to survey a cable route for Triton Knoll, although a final decision is yet to be made.

Triton Knoll's cables will make landfall at Anderby Creek, north of Skegness

The developer, RWE, applied to Ofgem after it was refused entry by five landowners in Lincolnshire, east England to survey whether the land was suitable for the onshore cables of the 900MW Triton Knoll offshore project .

Ofgem disputed reports from earlier this week by national newspaper The Times, which said the regulator had "pulled the plug" on new wind projects.

A spokesperson for the regulator told Windpower Monthly it was still evaluating a final decision.

"At present we are consulting on our current view before we make our decision and would ask anyone with an interest in this matter to respond to our consultation before it closes on 22 August," the spokesperson said.

Under the Energy Act 1989, RWE felt it had the right to enter private land "for the purpose of establishing whether or not the land is suitable for the construction or extension of a generating station".

In its consultation letter, Ofgem said it was "minded to refuse consent" because the onshore cable system of the project is not part of the generating station or an extension of it.

"There is not the requisite "direct" relationship between the proposed use of the land to be surveyed and the generation of electricity," Ofgem said in the letter.

In May, the regional authority Lincolnshire County Councll wrote to the UK government, expressing concern over the onshore electrical infrastructure of the project.