The application for Walney Extension offshore wind farm has been given development consent by the Department for Energy and Climate Change.
The wind farm will be located to the west and northwest of the existing offshore wind farm and will have an upper generating capacity of 750MW.
The decision announced today supports the recommendation made by the Planning Inspectorate and follows an examination process which met or exceeded all the statutory timescales laid down in The Planning Act 2008 (as amended by The Localism Act 2011).
The application was submitted for consideration on 28 June 2013 and accepted for examination on 22 July 2013. It is the 29th project to be decided under the Planning Act 2008 regime and is the 10th wind farm examined by the Planning Inspectorate to gain development consent.
Following a six month examination during which the public, statutory consultees and interested parties were given the opportunity to give evidence to the Examining Authority, a recommendation was made to the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change on 7 August 2014.
The Planning Inspectorate’s Chief Executive, Simon Ridley, said: “This is a significant application for the offshore wind energy sector. It could add 207 offshore wind turbines to the existing 102 turbines of Walney 1 and 2 to generate enough to provide electricity to over half a million homes.”
“The Examining Authority took full account of views from communities, particularly in the north west of England and the Isle of Man, who might be affected by this proposal, alongside national policy and evidence of the need for the project.”
“The certainty of knowing when a decision will be made following full consideration of public views provides developers and investors with the confidence needed to plan the infrastructure improvements this country needs to secure its energy and future economic growth.”
The decision, the recommendation made by the Panel to the Secretary of State and the evidence considered by the Examining Authority in reaching its decision, is publicly available on the National Infrastructure Planning website.