Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) is delighted to announce that after its crucial intervention with E.ON, the Rampion offshore wind farm developers, potentially catastrophic damage to local surfing waves has now been averted.
E.ON initially identified a potential reduction in wave height of up to 22% for surfing beaches in and around Brighton as a result of the planned renewable energy development. This would have been a major blow to the substantial local surf community and important related economy. However, thanks to vital discussions between SAS, E.ON and leading local surfers and surfing-related businesses, the developers have reassessed their plans to minimise impacts on important local surfing breaks. This outcome will deliver a win-win for sustainable energy and local surfers.
Surfers Against Sewage was quick to act on learning the potential loss of local wave resources in E.ON’s draft Environmental Statement (ES), swiftly mobilising prominent Brighton businesses and surfers to meet with developers to address their concerns.
SAS also provided comprehensive data relating to potentially affected sites of special surfing interest along the south coast and recommendations on how to minimise impacts on these unique and important resources.
Thanks to the timely actions of local surfers, led by campaigners at Surfers Against Sewage, E.ON’s engineering team has now revised the project with new models projecting a maximum loss to local wave height at 3%. As a safeguard, Surfers Against Sewage campaigners will be calling for E.ON’s new models to be verified with available wave buoy data if the Rampion development progresses.
Surfers Against Sewage believes that climate change poses a major threat to recreational water users, the marine environment and the global environment as a whole, and agrees that action needs to be taken to combat it. Surfers Against Sewage supports the advancement of renewable energy sources, but will examine each new development on a case-by case basis in order to assess any potential negative impacts on coastal environments, surfing resources and recreation.
TEXT “WAVE13£10” to “70070” to support the vital Protect Our Waves campaign.
(The Rampion Offshore Wind Farm is a proposed wind farm in the English Channel. If the Rampion proposal is to be developed it would sit inside an area of approximately 167 square kilometres. Inside that expansive sea area there could be a maximum of 195 three MW turbines. These would be spread out throughout the proposed area. The developers claim the Rampion proposal could power up to 450,000 homes with sustainable energy.)
We’re all very grateful to Surfers Against Sewage for ensuring the water sports community was represented and the valuable surf that Brighton enjoys is safeguarded for this and future generations.
Dave Samuel, local surfer and director of Brighton’s Paddle Round The Pier (the world’s biggest free beach and water sports festival)
After some urgent intervention from SAS there is a win-win solution for the south coast, protecting surf resources and delivering green energy. The current proposal won’t impact on the finite surfing resources the region enjoys and should provide a significant amount of sustainable, renewable energy. SAS will continue to encourage offshore developers to consult the entire community and make special efforts with hard to reach sectors.
Andy Cummins, SAS Campaign Director