Rampion 2: Proposals for new wind farm supported by Coastal West Sussex Partnership

"Just because people don’t like to see the turbines on the horizon should not be a reason to prevent the windfarm expansion."

Thursday, 23rd September 2021, 10:53 am
Updated Thursday, 23rd September 2021, 12:24 pm

Those were the words of Henry Powell, chairman of the Coastal West Sussex Partnership, which is backing the Rampion 2 proposals.

The project has been put forward by Germany energy group RWE and could see 325-metre-high turbines – the same height as the Eiffel Tower and taller than the highest peak of the South Downs — installed.

The Coastal West Sussex Partnership has announced its support for the Rampion 2 wind farm.

The project has been put forward by Germany energy group RWE and could see 325-metre-high turbines – the same height as the Eiffel Tower and taller than the highest peak of the South Downs — installed

Mr Powell said: “Regional leaders have committed to making the Greater Brighton area an exemplar in climate sustainability.

"This development fits perfectly with the Greater Brighton 10 pledges that were endorsed by the Greater Brighton Economic Board in 2020 and will further establish our area as a leader in clean, sustainable energy.

“The Rampion 2 development will make a significant contribution to producing clean, green energy and must be allowed to be delivered."

The expansion of the existing wind farm would involve the construction of a 22-mile onshore cable corridor, up to 50 metres wide, running through Climping beach and cutting diagonally through a large swathe of the South Downs National Park to a new sub-station at Bolney.

Fears have been raised that the proposed turbines could put off tourists from visiting the area.

West Sussex MPs Andrew Griffith and Nick Gibb shared residents' concerns over the location, height, and number of proposed turbines. Read more here"Just because people don’t like to see the turbines on the horizon should not be a reason to prevent the windfarm expansion," Mr Powell added.

"We need to embrace clean and green technologies as a matter of urgency to help mitigate the climate changes the world is currently experiencing.”

A nine-week public consultation ended last Thursday (September 16).

During a community-led public meeting in Littlehampton last month, Dr Colin Ross, who launched the website protectcoastalengland.org, said there won’t be any part of the horizon where you wouldn’t be able to see the turbines.

“There’s no uninterrupted view,” he said. “You will see them almost everywhere."

The director of the Coastal West Sussex Partnership said the wind farm will make a 'significant contribution' to the UK Government's offshore electricity target.

In a letter to local groups and authorities, Caroline Wood wrote: “The Government recently declared a climate emergency and has committed to the UK becoming Net Zero by 2050.

"It has also set a target to deliver over a third of the UK’s electricity from offshore wind by 2030 and the Rampion 2 wind farm will make a significant contribution towards this goal.

“We appreciate that the scale of this project has raised concerns, however, looking beyond the aesthetics of the windfarm, the energy that this development will produce has the ability to produce 1200MW of electricity; able to power 1M homes and make a significant contribution in reducing our reliance on fossil fuels.”

The letter also outlined the 'economic benefit' that the development could bring to local businesses. It encouraged RWE to 'think creatively' about how it will engage children, young people and schools to 'inspire the next generation' to continue their studies particularly in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM).

The West Sussex Partnership also asked for a financial contribution through the Sussex Community Foundation that is 'greater than the contribution' from the original development, 'due to the scale of Rampion 2'.