Devon wind project gets green light

Energy Minister Malcolm Wicks is to announce today that construction of the 66MW Fullabrook Down wind project in north Devon can go ahead

Energy Minister Malcolm Wicks is to announce today that Devon Wind Power can proceed with constructing their 66MW Fullabrook Down wind project in north Devon.

Wicks will give the government’s approval in an address to the wind industry annual conference in Glasgow, underlining the government’s support for renewable energy. The decision follows a four-week public inquiry into the development in December 2006 and January 2007.

When operational, it is estimated that the 22 turbine scheme will generate enough electricity to meet the average annual needs of 30,000 domestic consumers. This is equivalent to over 80 per cent of domestic electricity consumption or around 30 per cent of total energy electricity consumption in north Devon. It would also save almost 65,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually.

Wicks said: ‘Fullabrook Down will make a substantial contribution to meeting Devon’s renewable target of generating 151MW of renewable electricity by 2010 and would be nearly double the North Devon District Council’s target of 36MW.

‘Innovative projects like the new wave and tidal testing facility off the Orkney Islands, the recently consented Wave Hub in Cornwall and a Severn Barrage, if developed, will all ensure the UK remains a centre of renewable excellence.’

Wicks will also discuss what additional action is being taken in order to deliver even more capacity. This includes proposals to ‘band’ the Renewables Obligation to give increased support to developing technologies such as offshore wind and solar, and amending the Climate Change Policy Planning Statement so that it is more heavily weighed in favour of renewables applications.