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UPDATED: MP opposes windfarm off Dorset coast
4:20pm Tuesday 1st October 2013 in News
SOUTH Dorset MP Richard Drax has said the Navitus Bay windfarm would 'blight' the Dorset coastline.
Navitus Bay Wind Park development proposes to install up to 218 offshore wind turbines off in a stretch of sea from Purbeck to the Isle of Wight.
Mr Drax said there would be a 'forest of turbines' along the coast.
He said: “The whole of the Dorset coastline will be blighted by this if it goes ahead.
“It will affect tourism, sailing, fishing, diving and boating.
“Every one of our beaches will look out at a forest of turbines.
“That gentle smudge you see on the horizon in Navitus's mock up photographs is inaccurate.
“Experts have shown me how they have used the lowest possible resolution for those pictures in order to persuade the public.
“I suggest everyone writes to Navitus Bay as soon as possible to register their objections.”
He said he has written to UNESCO to try and create an exclusion zone for the Jurassic Coast.
Members of the public are invited to a number of consultations to meet the Navitus Bay team.
The closing date for the consultation is October 11.
Mr Drax attended the final round of public consultations and said it has 'failed to reassure' him about the project.
He has written to the developers demanding a change of site and said the majority of people at the meeting were against the windfarm.
“I have attended the latest exhibition and read the preliminary Environmental Impact Assessment report,” he said.
“Neither makes me feel any better about what will be an eyesore plonked in the middle of our Jurassic Coast.
“This is an UNESCO World Heritage Site the equivalent of putting a wind farm on the Great Barrier Reef.
“Imagine the outcry if they attempted that.”
Portland was shortlisted as the headquarters for the wind farm which would support around 160 jobs annually and give a boost of around £670 million to the local economy over the next 25 years.
There are a series of events along the south coast, including at St Edwards Church Hall, Swanage from 4pm to 7pm on October 9.
For more information visit navitusbaywindpark.co.uk or write to Freepost, Navitus Bay Wind Park.
PROJECT DIRECTOR SAYS MANY RESIDENTS SUPPORT THE PLANS
MIKE Unsworth, Navitus Bay project director, said a lot of residents support the project and the turbines would be 12 miles from the Dorset coast.
He said: “It is untrue to say that the majority of people are against the Navitus Bay Wind Park.
“We are working closely with the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site Steering Group as well as the UK National Commission for UNESCO to ensure that we assess the potential impacts of the development on the Jurassic Coast to their full satisfaction.
“If Navitus Bay Wind Park is given planning permission, there is no evidence to suggest it would have a negative impact on tourism.
“Importantly the wind park would not look like a 'forest of turbines' from the shoreline as Mr Drax suggests.
“Our visual images provide an accurate representation of what the proposed wind park would look like.”
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