Newts are OK so windfarm work goes ahead

Work has begun on a multi-million pound substation at Salle as part of the Sheringham Shoal offshore windfarm development.The final hurdle before construction started was the granting of a newt licence from Natural England.

Work has begun on a multi-million pound substation at Salle as part of the Sheringham Shoal offshore windfarm development.

The final hurdle before construction started was the granting of a newt licence from Natural England.

Before work could start on the preparation of the substation site, the developers had to safeguard some possible site inhabitants, great crested newts.

The great crested newt is the UK's largest newt species but due to diminishing numbers it has legal protection against harm and destruction of its natural habitat.


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The contractor building the substation, Areva, had to check for the presence of newts and then erect specially-designed newt fencing. This fencing aims to create a safe corridor for the newts' natural activity while keeping them out of the construction area.

The substation will take approximately a year to complete with commissioning scheduled for June 2010.

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The power generated by the wind farm will be transported to shore at Weybourne, then some 14 miles via underground cables to the new substation.

It will then be transported via existing cables to the national grid. The 315MW windfarm itself should be completed towards the end of 2011.

The Sheringham Shoal Offshore Wind Farm is owned equally by StatoilHydro and Statkraft through the joint venture company Scira Offshore Energy Limited. StatoilHydro is the operator for the project during the development phase.

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