‘This is a alarm call for the North Sea. The windmills destroy everything. The piles themselves present a hazard to marine life – and so do the electromagnetic fields around the power cables,’ said Job Schot, chairman of Dutch grassroots movement Eendracht Maakt Kracht (EMK).
‘Species such as sharks and rays are extremely sensitive to these electromagnetic fields that form a barrier to them that the do not dare to cross,’ he said, commenting that dead porpoises have also become an unwelcome feature of catches in the North Sea.
‘The legs being driven into the ground generates more than 200 decibels of noise, sixty decibels more than a jet taking off. Sound carries a long way underwater and – porpoises also communicate with sound. That noise leaves them deaf and blind. They become helpless, can no longer find their food.’
‘We already regularly pick up dead porpoises from the sea around the windfarms,’ commented Dirk Kraak.
‘This is a disaster from top to bottom of the food chain. Fish eat small animals, plankton, shrimps, worms, small crabs, what if they are hardly there any more? Then there are also fewer and fewer fish, which results in hardly any catch for the fishermen, but also less to no catch for the porpoises and seals.’
According to Job Schot, the eight to ten metre diameter windmill piles cause changes to current and seabed topography.
‘The sediment in which the benthic species that the fish prey on live is whipped up and carried away by the currents,’ he said.
EMK’s position is that the windfarms affect every part of the marine food chain and their warnings come as even more windfarms for the North Sea are proposed.
Dutch fishermen have launched a petition against the North Sea windfarms.
‘Wind farms cause a lot of disturbance in the water and on the seabed. Porpoises and other marine life is very sensitive to sound waves. This is something that urgently needs to be investigated well before new wind parks are created,’ Job Schot said, commenting that fishermen are deeply concerned about the consequences for the environment.