30th October 2014
Recently the Netherlands Government published their spatial planning vision for Wind at Sea.
Several areas in Netherlands territorial waters are destined for the construction of wind energy production centres. In advance of this allocation changes were made to shipping lanes and TSS’s in 2013 to optimise the clustering of wind turbines in fields of sufficient economic entity.
In their “vision document” the Netherlands Government still stipulates that the wind turbine farms are not open to shipping, whilst at the same time recognising that a discussion about lifting this interdiction for small craft is ongoing.
For many years Netherlands Watersport organisations have opposed the need and indeed the wisdom to close the wind turbine farms for recreational craft and small vessels. With the proposed areal coverage of wind turbines, closure for passage will mean that small craft are forced to sail close to shipping lanes. The consequences in hazards for small craft have been presented in a paper to the Ministry of Transport and Infra structure. In the coming weeks these discussions will most likely be finalised.
The Netherlands Watersport organisations use both the EBA and RYA position papers on this subject to support their points of view. The aim is to have one set of regulations for wind turbine farms across the North Sea.