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Off-shore windfarm debate rumbles on

A planning hearing into the controversial Navitus Bay windfarm got underway today - giving people the chance to have their say on what could become Europe's largest offshore facility.

Energy giants Eneco and EDF want to build it off the Dorset and Isle of Wight coastlines. Either a hundred and twenty - or a hundred and ninety turbines - would be put up across an area of sea half the size of the Isle of Wight, powering 700,000 homes. It has has support from green energy campaigners but opponents claim it'll ruin the local tourist economy - and the view.

Interviewees:

Chris Lisher is the harbour master at Yarmouth on the Isle of Wight, one of three ports which could become the base for Navitus Bay's onshore support facilities.

Mick Pearce runs a guest house right on the seafront looking out towards the turbines.

Lewes MP praises windfarm as 'brilliant'

An MP from East Sussex has welcomed news of a windfarm off the coast of East Sussex.

Lewes MP Norman Baker says it is 'great news' that the Rampion offshore wind farm has been given consent from the government to go ahead.

This project is expected to support over 750 jobs and bring over £2 billion of investment into the UK’s economy. Once built, the wind farm would generate enough electricity to power approximately 450,000 homes.

This is great news for Newhaven and something I have lobbied hard for. It is positioning Newhaven very well as the South East Centre of offshore renewable technology for the century ahead. It is great for the economy and great for the environment

It is a good thing the Energy Secretary has not listened to the ‘naysayers’ who continually talk down renewable energy.

This offshore renewable energy source will be able to provide energy for approximately 450,000 homes and is an investment in our energy security for the future, helping to make Britain self-sufficient in the future.”

– Norman Baker MP

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Support for Sussex windfarm plans

The chief operating officer of E.ON has said he is delighted after receiving the go-ahead for the windfarm off the Sussex coast.

This is a key milestone for the project and we firmly believe Rampion will play an important role in helping to ensure future security of supply and make a significant contribution towards meeting the UK's renewable energy targets."

– Michael Lewis, chief operating officer, E.ON Renewables
The wind turbines will bring jobs to the local area Credit: PA

The wind farm will not only help generate jobs during both construction and operation, but also provide a boost to the port regeneration at Newhaven and the local economy."

– Chris Tomlinson, development manager for Rampion Wind Farm

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Wind farms could be banned in Hampshire

Hampshire County Council is considering banning the development of large scale wind farms.

The authority is consulting on proposals which would stop all large wind turbines and wind farms from being built on council owned land.

A new report says that while the turbines provide green renewable energy they have an "adverse impact" on the landscape.