The Bristol Port Company Wind Turbines

Patrick Kearon
The Bristol Port Company
• Global warming – we all need to reduce CO2
output from our activities
• UK Target = 20% reduction in 1990 CO2 levels by
• South West Target = 11-15% of electricity from
renewable sources
• Dependence on finite fossil fuels & increasing
energy costs
• UK is Europe’s windiest country - average mean
wind speeds >7m/s (18mph)
The Answer
Imperative for The
Bristol Port Company to
develop a local
renewable energy
source to supply port
Outline of Proposals
• Erect 3 wind turbines (up to 3 MW), including
associated bases and cables
• Construct control building & access ways
• Combined 9 MW = up to 75% of port’s
electricity demand
• Development site is 8.5 hectares of reclaimed
land in Avonmouth Dock
• Adjacent to Severn Estuary
Site Location
Site Selection - Alternatives
• 9 potential locations short-listed and tested
against 3 key factors:
– Wind generating potential
– Aviation safety (Filton Airfeld)
– Possible impacts on birds using the estuary
• This location in Avonmouth Docks was identified
as optimum site
• Turbine location finely adjusted to not interfere
with air safety & bird migration routes
The Preferred Site
Typical Wind Turbine Dimensions
Rotor diameter
70 metres (35m
393 ft
Hub height
85 metres
279 feet
Environmental Issues
Geology/Ground Conditions
Landscape and visual impacts
Traffic and transport
Noise and vibration
Air traffic
Marine navigation
Landscape and Visual Impacts
• Evaluate effect on local landscape
• Turbines located in low-lying, heavily industrialised
landscape, with many tall structures & buildings
• Landform, structures & woodlands restrict visibility
• Turbines will be visible from:
– Avonmouth Village (partial, restricted views, change
inevitable in places)
– Pill (noticeable, but not intrusive)
– Higher elevations e.g. Lawrence Weston & Shirehampton
(more visible, but distant & panoramic, not intrusive)
Photomontage of Landscape
Ecology and Birds
• No valuable habitats on site, but next to Severn
Estuary SPA, SSSI and Ramsar site
• Ecological surveys to inform assessment of impacts
on wildlife, including
– Extended Phase 1 habitat survey
– Bird surveys (e.g. High tide/low tide counts, night time,
migration and breeding surveys)
• Key potential impacts on birds are Disturbance &
• With mitigation no adverse impact during
• 5 years monitoring (review in 2 years)
Bird Movements
• Assessment of archaeological remains in the
vicinity of the development site:
– Terrestrial archaeology
– Maritime archaeology and historic activity
• Borehole assessment
• No known sites or monuments affected by the
• Construction of turbines includes 30 metre piles
into made ground
• Mitigation/Monitoring – archaeological recording
Historic Mapping
Balance of Effects
• No major adverse environmental impacts
• Potential disturbance of SPA birds and changed
views from areas of Avonmouth Village
• All other negative impacts avoided or reduced by
mitigation and design measures
• 17-26% of south west’s renewable energy target
• Provision of up to 75% of Port’s electricity
• Significant reduction in green house gasses
(18,319 tonnes CO2 /plus SO2 & NOx)
Construction & Operation
• Construction end 2006
• Construction programme
about 36 weeks
• In operation this time in
• Operational life of 25 years
• Turbines then either
replaced, refurbished or
removed & site reinstated
The Way Forward
• BPC agreement with Ecotricity who will construct,
own and operate the turbines
• BPC provided with energy for life of turbines
• “Overspill” electricity is publicly available - see
• We all need to do more to tackle global warming
• Wind turbines can contribute to the renewable
energy solution