Fewer turbines for 'gigantic' Atlantic Array wind farm

Wind turbine The firm predicts the farm would provide enough electricity to power 900,000 households

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The number of turbines planned for an offshore wind farm has been reduced from a maximum of 278 to 240, the firm behind the project has revealed.

RWE npower renewables, the developers of the Atlantic Array off north Devon, has reduced its plans following a consultation and environmental study.

Campaigners, Slay The Array, said it was a minor change and would make little difference.

The plans are expected to be submitted in June.

'Good compromise'

A company spokesman said the changes focused on reducing the visual effects and underwater disturbance caused when constructing the farm.

Alistair Gill, head of offshore wind farm development, said the project was "half the size of the original plans".

The initial plan was to build a maximum of 417 turbines.

Mr Gill said: "It's a tiny fraction of the size awarded by the Crown Estate for offshore development in the Bristol Channel.

"I think this is a good compromise," he said.

The company added the initial size awarded by the Crown Estate was 367 sq miles (950 sq km) and its revised project would be 77 sq miles (200 sq km).

'Absolutely gigantic'

Campaigner, Steve Crowther, said: "This is about whether it's appropriate to have a wind farm twice the size of Bristol nine miles off the coast of north Devon.

"People don't seem to understand the scale of this, it's absolutely gigantic."

RWE npower renewables predicts the farm would provide enough electricity to power 900,000 households.

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