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Steam Packet's concerns over wind farm plans

A statement from the Steam Packet says a number of issues need to be clarified following Dong Energy's recent public display of its Irish Sea wind farm plans.

The session at the Villa Marina last week gave Island residents the chance to view the plans for a 200-turbine extension to the existing Walney Island wind farm off the Cumbrian coast, which opened earlier this year.

Steam Packet Company Chief Executive Mark Woodward says Dong's claim there would be no disruption to Isle of Man shipping is misleading, as the Packet would be left with fewer weather-routing options.

Weather routing are the options the Master has to change the route the vessel sails to take account of the prevailing winds and weather, to reduce passenger discomfort or cargo damage.

Mark Woodward says more wind farms will limit the Master's ability to do this and therefore a sailing that would currently proceed would have to be cancelled.

He adds, "The Dong Walney public consultation was potentially somewhat misleading to the Manx public as there appeared to be no wall displays showing the adjacent Centrica/Dong additional proposed developments – no diagrams showing the existing Isle of Man routes, and no displays to illustrate or review what wind farm-induced weather cancellations will mean to Island passengers and businesses."

"Wind farm developments have already impacted on our services and these developments are just the tip of the iceberg compared to what is now proposed."

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