Environmental surveys are due to start for a planned 400MW off the east coast of Northern Ireland.
Environmental consultancy APEM to carry out a two-year study of the coastal area involved for floating specialist SBM Offshore and Irish firm NMK Renewables’ planned 400MW North Channel floating offshore wind farm.
APEM will do a digital aerial survey to gather density, abundance and behaviour data on seabirds and marine mammals. It will begin this autumn to make sure that the winter breeding season is included.
North Channel is set to include a 300MW first phase and 100MW second phase, using 15-20 turbines and 5-7 turbines, respectively – indicating average power ratings of up to 20MW.
The turbines would be installed on SBM’s lightweight steel tension-leg platform. Most of the structure would be submerged underwater and anchored to the seabed under tension to minimise movement.