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08.06.2005

Thames Estuary Windfarms

The PLA understands and supports the Government’s drive to develop alternative sources of energy. However, it is essential that proposed schemes for wind farms in the Thames Estuary are properly balanced against their effects on navigational safety and the environment, matters on which the PLA is already taking the lead.

Recent trials in the Thames Estuary have indicated that wind turbines can have detrimental effects on ship radar performance.  The PLA therefore welcomes the Government’s acknowledgement of the issue by appointing BMT (British Maritime Technology) to undertake further research.

The Estuary is a challenging and dynamic environment and we believe that it is essential for all such matters to be comprehensively assessed, particularly where it is proposed to locate wind turbines close to busy and converging shipping lanes in the nationally important approaches to the Port of London.

Contact: Martin Garside, Port of London Authority. Tel: 020 7743 7915.

Notes to Editors:

  1. The Port of London Authority is the port authority for 150km (95 miles) of the tidal Thames from the sea to Teddington. It provides navigational, pilotage and other services for ships using the Port of London.
  2. The Port of London comprises over 70 independently owned terminals and port facilities, which handle a wide range of cargoes.
  3. London is one of the top three ports in the UK and handles over 50 million tonnes of cargo each year.