efficient windfarm in Bein an Tuirc, Argyll. Just 46 wind turbines
will deliver an output of 30 MW, enough to supply electricity to
25,000 homes. The development will prevent 92,000 tonnes of CO2
Scottish Power's£21m project is able to produce its power so
efficiently because it is situated on the Kintyre peninsula where
wind resources are amongst the best in Europe. The 40 metre high
towers sit on top of the highest hill in Kintyre 454 metres above sea
level. The wind travels unimpeded, gathering speed, until it hits the
47 metre diameter blades.
The wind farm is the first of what is hoped to be three windfarm
developments in Argyll by Scottish power. Two further developments,
one of which one has already gained consent, are expected to bring
local jobs, primarily in their construction. The local turbine
factory in Machrihanish is expected to benefit.
Mr Wilson said:
'This project shows that the technology is now available to produce
not only clean but also efficient electricity from wind power.
'It has long been recognised that the Kintyre peninsula offers
outstanding potential for the development of windpower. I am
delighted that a project of such significance has emerged helping
Scotland's vast renewables potential to be released.
'Wind power has a vital contribution to make towards our renewable
energy targets. The government will encourage developments both
onshore and offshore, and create the right conditions for both larger
scale power projects like this one and also smaller scale ones to
'Renewables is not just about energy and the environment but also
about manufacturing and jobs. There are very significant
opportunities for UK industry and if they respond well to this, it
will result in new generating equipment and services being supplied
by UK firms.'
As part of the windfarm project, conservation reserves will be
created on the surrounding land, to help build the threatened
population of one of black grouse. Also, the windfarm is situated at
the edge of a long established golden eagle territory and during
development there has been large scale habitat management aimed at
making the territory more sustainable in the future.
Mr Wilson added:
'I am delighted that this project will not only reduce the effects of
climate change but also protect our environment through a range of
conservation measures. Large companies involving themselves with a
particular site should use their resources at their disposal to help
the area in general.'
The government expects to create a£1bn market for renewable
energy by 2010. The main driver for this will be the Renewables
Obligation which will require electricity suppliers to source ten per
cent of their electricity from renewable sources. In addition a£260m support programme has been provided over the next three years
of which£64m is going towards wind energy.
1. The Wind farm, near Carradale, is Scottish Power's eleventh in
the UK and brings its total ownership of renewable energy generation
to around 150 MW. Scottish Power plant to add at least a further 785
MW of wind generation by 2010, which would meet more than half of
Scotland's renewable energy targets.
2. Beinn an Tuirc was commissioned in December 2001 and the
machines have a design life of 20 years. Generation starts in winds
of 4 meters/sdecond (8.8 mph), is optimal at 15 m/s (33 mph) and cuts
out at 25 m/s (55 mph)
3. The government announced its proposals for the new Renewables
Obligation on 5 October 2000. Copies of the
latest Renewables Obligation consultation document are available from
the DTI website at http://www.dti.gov.uk/renewable/consultations.htm.
Copies of the DTI Sustainable Development Strategy are available from
Simon Kelly on 020 7215 1975