Marine Environmental impact

Impact on the marine environment in the North Sea

As a clean-tech company, C-Power aims at constructing and operating an offshore wind farm in the most environmentally friendly way.
As early as 2003, C-Power has performed a comprehensive Environmental Impact Study (EIS). In this study, independent marine scientists have studied the impact of C-Power’s offshore wind farm on sea birds, sea mammals, fish, and benthic organisms and analysed possible safety risks and the visual impact from the seashore.
Based on this report, the MUMM (Management Unit of the Mathematical Models of the North Sea) -  the federal authority in charge of scientific research in the North Sea - has made a substantial Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) of the project. The conclusion of both the EIS and EIA were that the impact of the project on the marine environment was minor, and thus acceptable.
The EIS and the EIA including annexes are available on https://odnature.naturalsciences.be/mumm/en/windfarms/project/10


Monitoring marine environment

As of 2008, C-Power participates in a marine environment monitoring program. The purpose of this monitoring program is to compare the expected environmental effects of the wind farm with the empirically observed impacts in and around the Thornton Bank.
The monitoring is carried out by scientists of the MUMM or by third parties (university, specialised consultants,..). The results of the marine environment monitoring are published on a yearly basis and are available on the website of the MUMM.
Find the last report via following link: https://www.naturalsciences.be/en/news/item/21635/

In 2013, a workshop presenting the results of the first 5 years of marine environment monitoring was organised by C-Power, in collaboration with the MUMM. All stakeholders were invited to participate in this workshop.

Monitoring shows that thousands of organisms are developing on and around the foundations. These organisms can be seen as one of the reasons that fish are increasingly attracted to the Thornton Bank. This nutrient-rich site plays an especially important role in attracting cod and pouting.

The MUMM has also identified an increase in the seabird population. Wind farms offer an additional resting-place as well as a new food-abundant area to seabirds. For most species, the dreaded rotor blades of the wind turbines do not constitute any danger. Most seabirds avoid wind farm sites anyway, and of those species that are drawn to it, some fly so high that the radius of the blade hardly ever interferes with their flight height pattern.

“Energy from wind power is clean and renewable, and if there is one overwhelming threat to wildlife and conservation, it is global warming."
Nick Shelton, RSPB (The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds).