In a week where 29 whales have been stranded on Europe’s beaches we note little comment from Marine Agencies, the Governments or Offshore Wind. Certainly in these pages previously we have expressed concern from the desert like tracts below the Kent Offshore wind farm to the impact of piling and emf effect of all the undersea transmission cables. What has been identified is the large number of jelly fish, whole shoals in fact, that have been drawn to offshore wind farms. Some years ago I remember meeting with Marine Scotland and asking what research had been done. The answer at the time was none, reliance having been placed on marine biology consultation by developers and promoted by Renewables UK. Reality had however dawned and a survey had been commissioned at the time. Problem is that research of that nature takes many years and the reports so far produced raise more questions than they provide answers. Certainly promises of reef like conditions below turbines and fishing vessels meandering through wind farm has proved pure rhetoric with no fact. I have yet to see any post installation reports by developers but then did anyone really expect them. No doubt the Guardian and the BBC will blame the strandings on Climate Change. However only an open minded approach including the effect of sonar, emf and vibration will provide a balanced answer to the debate. Whales do strand and there have been massed beachings before where no wind farm were in existence. However the impact of offshore wind on mammals and all sea life must be understood. As must be the effect on the sea bed, on underwater currents and on scour. So far little independent research has been published.
There is however an interesting report from Oregon that is worth consideration: http://oregonwave.org/news/impact-of-offshore-wind-farm-construction-on-marine-animals/