The Docking Shoal project was developed by Centrica as part of The Crown Estate's Round 2 of UK offshore wind licensing. After 8 years of development, the project was ultimately refused planning consent by the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change. The current study seeks to explore the factors behind this decision, as well as its impact and legacy for the offshore wind industry from the perspectives of key stakeholders including the project developer, a statutory consultee, and the regulatory body. Key findings are aligned along themes of the consenting process, environmental impacts, views and reactions to the decision, and lessons learned. The study concludes that the Docking Shoal decision centred on issues of impacts upon seabird populations of the Docking Shoal project itself, as well as the potential cumulative impacts of neighbouring offshore wind project developments. The study also reveals that the Docking Shoal project marked a shift in approach by the regulator towards a more holistic and strategic assessment of cumulative impacts, taking into account the combined effects of all foreseeable neighbouring projects in the pipeline. Finally, the paper discusses some of the key issues highlighted by the Docking Shoal project that have continued to impact upon the development and deployment of offshore wind projects.
Refusal of planning consent for the Docking Shoal offshore wind farm: Stakeholder perspectives and lessons learned
Title: Refusal of planning consent for the Docking Shoal offshore wind farm: Stakeholder perspectives and lessons learned
June 04, 2019
Journal: Marine Policy
Volume: In Press
Broadbent, I.; Nixon, C. (2019). Refusal of planning consent for the Docking Shoal offshore wind farm: Stakeholder perspectives and lessons learned. Marine Policy, In Press.