The development of offshore wind farms should be easier, cheaper and – significantly – less traumatic for local sealife after the energy industry hit upon a less noisy way of installing turbine foundations on the seabed. Six energy companies including SSE, Shell and Eon have been working with the Carbon Trust and Fistuca, a company spun out of Eindhoven University of Technology, to develop a new hammer that uses a water tank for “a more energetic but quieter blow”. The super-quiet hammer should make quite a splash in the industry. Underwater noise pollution is a big issue for offshore wind farm developers, which face restrictions on construction and have to undertake expensive mitigation measures to avoid disturbing sealife. For example, planning consent for Hornsea Project Two in the North Sea, the world’s largest proposed offshore wind farm, was delayed because of concerns about upsetting harbour porpoises.
Times 21st Aug 2018 read more »