North Falls Offshore Wind Farm.

North Falls Offshore Wind Farm is being developed on a site more than 20 kilometres off the UK coast in the southern North Sea and covers a total area of 150 km². It is an extension project to the adjacent 504 megawatt Greater Gabbard Offshore Wind Farm, opened in 2013.

It is being developed by a joint venture company owned equally by SSE Renewables and RWE.

North Falls Offshore Wind Farm location.
Legend
North Falls Offshore Wind Farm
Greater Gabbard Offshore Wind Farm
Nearby Wind Farm Sites and Status
Galloper Offshore Wind Farm (in operation)
Five Estuaries Offshore Wind Farm (in planning)

The Project So Far

In February 2017, The Crown Estate launched a process for wind farm operators to apply for extensions to their existing projects. This opportunity closed in May 2018, with eight project applications received.

A Plan Level Habitats Regulations Assessment (HRA), was undertaken to assess the possible impact of the proposed wind farm extensions on relevant nature conservation sites of European importance. Expert independent advisors were utilised and there were consultations with the statutory marine planning authorities, the statutory nature conservation bodies and a number of non-governmental stakeholders.

In August 2019, The Crown Estate announced the conclusion of the HRA confirming that seven of the 2017 extension application projects, representing a total generating capacity of 2.85 gigawatts, would progress to the award of development rights, including what is now called North Falls Offshore Wind Farm.

The Agreement for Lease between North Falls Offshore Wind Farm and The Crown Estate was signed in Summer 2020 and the project is now in the early stages of development.

Harnessing the power of North Sea Wind

Project Description

The project has commenced work that will determine how North Falls could look. At this stage it is too early to say how many turbines it will include or other specific details. However it will comprise wind turbines and their associated foundations, array cables which will connect the turbines to an offshore substation, export cables which will transmit the power from the offshore substation to shore, onshore cables and an onshore substation. National Grid has not completed its technical and environmental studies so no conclusion has been made about the location of the onshore grid connection at this stage.

As the project progresses, more details will be provided on the website and directly to stakeholders, the community and our potential supply chain.

Indicative Timeline

Date Action

Summer 2019

The Crown Estate concludes its Habitats Regulations Assessment.

Seven projects totalling 2.85 GW of new capacity to be awarded agreements for lease.

Summer 2020

North Falls Offshore Wind Farm shareholder agreement signed between the two owners, SSE Renewables and RWE.

Agreement for Lease signed with The Crown Estate.

Early contracts awarded and start of detailed surveys to inform the Environmental Impact Assessment and Habitats Regulations Assessment.

2020 to 2023

Onshore and offshore surveys and studies, project planning and design, stakeholder consultation and community engagement undertaken, along with an Environmental Assessment and Project Level Habitats Regulations Assessment.

Spring 2023

Environmental Impact Assessment completed.

Project Level Habitats Regulations Assessment completed.

Summer 2023

Development Consent Order and supporting Environmental Information submitted to the Planning Inspectorate.

2024/25

Planning Inspectorate makes recommendation to the Secretary of State.

Secretary of State announces consent decision.

2025

Project design finalised, major component and construction contracts awarded and wind farm constructed.

2030

Wind farm expected to be operational by the end of the decade.

Consultation

The development process began in earnest in Summer 2020 after the owners’ joint venture agreement was signed. This initial work includes early surveys, engagement with statutory consultees, data gathering, and assessing key onshore and offshore constraints.

Once design options for the project have been matured, we will take them to our stakeholders for feedback. The development of the wind farm will be an iterative process with numerous opportunities for input. Local residents and the community in the vicinity of the proposed onshore infrastructure will be a priority during the development of the project.

We will welcome views at any time, however there will be specific statutory consultation periods where we will be asking for comments related to defined elements of our proposals. Consultation periods will be promoted and advertised, including here on this website, so please check back regularly for any updates. The first phase of statutory consultation is anticipated for around mid-2021.

Contact

The project is in a very early phase so there are limited details, however if you would like to contact the project team please email contact@northfallsoffshore.com or call 0800 254 5340