Why Some Fishermen Are Wary Of Offshore Wind Farms

Transatlantic Media Fellowship

Some fishermen worry that wind farms will disrupt fisheries and make it even harder to make a living. But European wind farm developers say their industry can coexist with fishing. Part 2 of a two-part series.

Teaser Image Caption
Fisherman Steve Barratt is aboard his boat Razorbill in the Ramsgate harbor

This article was first published by WBUR on January 17th, 2018 as part of our Transatlantic Media Fellowship program.

It’s a sunny afternoon in the English town of Ramsgate, and Steve Barratt is getting ready to fish. He’s on the deck of his boat, the Razorbill, running a massive tangle of nets through a squeaky pulley.

There’s a fish still stuck in one, so he tosses it to the side. "There’s one I missed. That’s a Dover sole. So that’ll be my dinner later," he says, laughing.

Once Barratt departs, it’ll be a long trip to waters near the Netherlands, where he’ll fish for more Dover sole.

“At the moment I’m having to steam three hours to catch fish," he says. "Two reasons I’m having to steam three hours: one, to try and avoid fish I have no quota for, and the other reason is the wind farm’s in the way.”

Barratt’s talking about a wind farm in the Thames Estuary that’s been in operation for the past seven years. It’s one of four off the coast of this region of England, and there are plans for an expansion.

To read the full article, click here.

Please note that the views expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect those of the Heinrich Böll Foundation.