Menu

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

afloat headers power

Displaying items by tag: Sceirde Rocks Windfarm

A petition opposing the offshore wind farm planned for the Sceirde rocks off Connemara has almost reached its target of 2,500 signatures.

The petition was initiated last month after a photomontage of the planned project was published on the company website, and was at 2,349 signatures on May 28th.

As Afloat has previously reported, the Sceirde Rocks venture, or Fuinneamh Sceirde Teoranta, was an Irish project which was acquired by the Green Investment Group (GIG) in September 2021.

It is now managed by Corio Generation, which was established as a specialist offshore wind business by GIG in April 2022, and is being developed as a joint venture with the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, with a target completion date of 2030.

The €1.5 billion wind farm is one of four phase one offshore wind projects, and the only one of the four earmarked for the west coast.

The proposed wind farm involved 325-metre turbines located 5km to 11.5km off this coastline.

The wind farm is “a milestone project for Ireland that will bring much-needed investment and employment opportunities to Connemara, and to the wider Galway region”, Tim Coffey, project director of Sceirde Rocks wind farm, told The Irish Times recently.

A targeted 450 megawatt capacity is expected to power 350,000 homes, and the developers are hoping to submit a planning application this year.

The developers have committed €3.5 million a year to a community benefit fund totalling €70 million.

The petition on Change.org says that “as residents of Connemara, we are concerned about the impacts of the proposed Sceirde Rocks wind farm which will affect communities stretching from Clifden to Ballyconneely, Roundstone and the Gaeltacht districts from Carna to the Aran Islands”.

“Famous around the world for its natural beauty, the west coast of Ireland and Conamara in particular, is home to many of the country’s most scenic and environmentally important habitats,”it says.

“We strongly support renewable energy that achieves necessary climate goals and believe this must be done without recklessly damaging the marine environment or putting corporate profits before the needs of people and wildlife,”it says.

The authors of the petition list their concerns as:

  • (1) The size and proximity of the turbines to shore and their impacts on sites of historical and scientific importance, tourism, and fishing which sustain local communities.
  • (2) The impact on sensitive coastal and seabed environments which are critical for supporting the areas’ diverse wildlife, including endangered bird species.
  • (3) Direct impact on rare and migratory birds which will inevitably be struck and killed by turbine blades, as well as marine species including bottlenose dolphins and harbour porpoises affected by the increased marine noise associated with near shore wind farms.
  • (4) The likely resultant closure of the University of Galway’s globally important Mace Head Atmospheric Research Station.
  • (5) The lack of alignment with existing government strategies and plans. All Irish renewable energy projects – especially those proposed within or adjacent to environmentally sensitive areas – should align with national and EU rules, guidelines and strategies.
Published in Power From the Sea
Tagged under

Fuinneamh Sceirde Teoranta (FST) will be undertaking both a geotechnical survey and geophysical survey for the Sceirde Rocks Windfarm Project in the Western Coastal Area (Connemara/Outer Galway Bay) and Atlantic Ocean, between Monday 15 April and Monday 10 June, subject to weather and operational constraints.

These surveys follow last September’s geophysical survey and will be undertaken by the multi-purpose offshore vessel Dina Polaris (callsign CQOF), which is fitted with a geotechnical drilling rig, and the research vessel Lady Kathleen (callsign EIXT2). Both vessels will operate up to 24 hours per day and will be displaying the appropriate lights and shapes.

During operations, the vessels will be restricted in their ability to manoeuvre. Therefore, passing vessels are requested to leave a wide berth during the deployment operations. Radio transmissions will be conducted with other seafarers to notify them of the operations. The vessels will be monitoring VHF Channel 16 at all times for safety purposes.

The equipment for each survey will be deployed within the bounds of the survey areas detailed in Marine Notice No 17 of 2024, attached below.

Published in Power From the Sea

The Department of Transport has been advised by Fuinneamh Sceirde Teoranta (FST) that a geophysical seabed survey will take place in the Western Coastal Area (Connemara/Outer Galway Bay/Atlantic Ocean) between Tuesday 5 September and the end of October, subject to weather and operational constraints.

The work follows previously scheduled geotechnical and benthic surveys for the proposed Sceirde Rocks Windfarm in north Galway Bay off southwestern Connemara.

Surveying will be conducted by two vessels: the semi-SWATH catamaran Roman Rebel (callsign 2ICA5), and the Lady Kathleen (callsign EIXT2), a catamaran. Both vessels will conduct 24-hour operations and will display appropriate lights and signals.

During operations, the vessels will be restricted in their ability to manoeuvre. Radio transmissions will be conducted with other seafarers to notify them of the operations. All other vessels are requested to leave a wide berth during the surveys due to the nature of the operations and the work vessels’ limited manoeuvrability. Both vessels will be monitoring VHF Channel 16 at all times for safety purposes.

Coordinates of the survey locations as well as contact details can be found in Marine Notice No 54 of 2023, attached below.

Published in Power From the Sea

The Department of Transport has been advised by Fuinneamh Sceirde Teoranta (FST) that benthic and geotechnical survey vessels will be deployed at the site of the proposed Sceirde Rocks Windfarm in north Galway Bay off southwestern Connemara.

The deployment will take place from this Saturday 29 July — as with the metocean survey previously reported on Afloat.ie — to the end of September, subject to weather and operational constraints.

The benthic survey will take place using the vessel Ocean Navigator (callsign EI018) which will operate in daylight hours. The geotechnical survey will take place using the vessels Geoquip Seehorn (callsign 5BSW) and Glomar Vantage (callsign HO3057) which will operate on a 24-hour basis.

Coordinates and a map of the deployment area as well as contact details can be found in Marine Notice No 47 of 2023, attached below.

Published in Power From the Sea

The Department of Transport has been advised by Fuinneamh Sceirde Teoranta (FST) that a metocean survey comprising one large metocean buoy and two trawl resistant seabed frames will be deployed at the site of the proposed Sceirde Rocks Windfarm in north Galway Bay off southwestern Connemara.

The deployment will take place between this Saturday 29 July and the end of August, subject to weather and operational constraints.

Equipment will remain in place for up to 24 months, and periodic service visits to the equipment will take place throughout the survey period.

The metocean buoy has a hull diameter of 3.6m and focal height of 4m. The buoy is yellow in colour and displays a St Andrew’s Cross. It is mounted with one automatic identification system (AIS) unit (161.975 MHz) and one navigation light (sequence Fl(5) 20s, range 3nm).

The buoy is double moored using a mooring chain and sinker blocks. The anchor and sinkers will be placed approximately 200m away from the metocean buoy. The mooring line will consist of approximately 200m of chain per leg, partially suspended in the water column and partially laying on the seabed.

The trawl-resistant seabed frames are approximately one square metre each and will be unmarked.

This metocean equipment will be deployed from the ILV Granuaile (callsign EIPT), which will operate on a 24-hour basis. Throughout operations, the vessel will display the appropriate lights and shapes as required under the COLREGS Rule 27 (b).

During operations, the vessel will be restricted in its ability to manoeuvre. Vessels are requested to leave a wide berth during the deployment operations.

Radio transmissions will be conducted with other seafarers to notify them of the operations. All vessels will monitor VHF Channel 16 for emergency communications with other seafarers and then mutually agree another channel to switch to for further discussion as needed.

Coordinates and a map of the deployment area as well as contact details can be found in Marine Notice No 46 of 2023, attached below.

Published in Power From the Sea

There's no doubting the growth of power-boating in Irish waters over the past decade and Afloat's online coverage is designed to keep pace of these exciting developments.

Check these pages for news and views on powerboating, motorboating, engines, Ribs and motor cruising.

If you have ideas for our pages we'd love to hear from you. Please email us at [email protected]