I was pleased to read in Wednesday’s Dorset Echo about an online petition to support an offshore windfarm 12 miles from the Dorset coast.

The situation is much clearer since the original Navitus Bay planning application was turned down in 2015.

The concerns about loss of tourists due to the visual impact of the windfarm can now easily be checked by talking to businesses in Brighton, where there is an operating windfarm off the Sussex coast.

In practice the windfarm has not impacted tourism and there are boat trips for holidaymakers to view the turbines.

Another major change since 2015 is the increased evidence of potentially unstoppable climate change unless we dramatically reduce CO2 emissions.

As mentioned in Dorset Council’s Climate and Ecological Emergency Strategy, “we have only eight to ten years at the current rate of CO2 emissions within which serious action is required to avert this crisis and avoid the worst impacts.”

An offshore windfarm the size of the original Navitus Bay proposal, when combined with existing solar farms in Dorset, would meet the entire current electricity demand in Bournemouth, Christchurch, Poole and Dorset without CO2 emissions (including all business and household electricity use).

Finally, the cost of offshore wind energy has plummeted since 2015. The latest round of offshore windfarms are selling electricity into the grid at 5p/ kWh – less than a quarter the cost of electricity from gas-fired power stations.

This low offshore wind price is fixed by the Government for a period of 15 years and is possible because wind turbines, unlike gas power stations, have no fuel costs.

We in the Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole and in Dorset need to play our part in reducing CO2 emissions. The downsides of an offshore windfarm are minimal compared to the benefits.

Pete West

Stavordale Road