Swedish energy company Vattenfall has launched a $3.3m scientific fund to understand the environmental impacts of offshore wind.

Believed to be the largest research programme of its kind, the study will be located at an 11-turbine project at Vattenfall’s European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre (EOWDC).

A scientific panel is advising on the allocation of the fund. Made up of specialists in the field – including Scottish NatuVattenfall launches offshore wind environmental research programmeral Heritage, RSPB Scotland, Whale and Dolphin Conservation and The Crown Estate – the panel is now calling on scientists to apply to join the programme.

Adam Ezzamel, project director for the EOWDC at Vattenfall, said: “In-depth scientific research and monitoring in a real-time environment is recognised as vital to maximising the learning opportunities for the offshore wind sector. We’re pleased that the research will take place at the EOWDC as it underlines the importance of the scheme as a global hub of innovation.     

“We are working collaboratively with a number of key environmental agencies to allocate the research budget, and look forward to working closely with the successful parties to facilitate exceptional science.”

Aly McCluskie, senior conservation scientist at RSPB Scotland, said: “Offshore wind has huge potential to help reduce our carbon emissions but we need to improve our understanding of its environmental effects to help ensure developments happen without harming wildlife.”

More information about the programme is available here

The closing date for expressions of interest in the research programme is Friday (September 2).


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