CONTROVERSIAL plans were lodged today for a massive 213 turbine offshore windfarm in the Firth of Tay within ten miles of the Angus coastline.
Inch Cape Offshore Limited (ICOL), a joint venture company formed by Spanish energy giants Repsol Nuevas Energias and EDP Renováveis, has submitted an application to develop the huge windfarm to Marine Scotland as part of The Crown Estate’s Scottish Territorial Waters licensing programme.
The Inch Cape Offshore Wind Farm site could generate as much as three gigawatts of power - enough to power 680,000 homes - and lead to 1,600 jobs boost during construction.
The turbines, up to 215 metres high, will be spread across an area of up top 150 square kilometres between ten and 13 miles from the Angus coast.
Ronnie Bonnar, Managing Director of Repsol UK, said: “The submission of the consent application is an important milestone for the Inch Cape project. It represents another major step towards development of offshore wind power project.
“It represents another major step towards development of offshore wind power in the outer Firth of Tay, delivering opportunities for communities in the surrounding area to benefit from the investment which is expected to deliver around 1,600 Scottish jobs during construction.”
He added: “We look forward to working with the relevant stakeholders to ensure a positive outcome for the application. Offshore wind energy will be critical to delivering the UK’s energy needs in the coming decades and Repsol is committed to being at the heart of this emerging industry.’’
Dan Finch, Managing Director of EDPR UK, said: “This represents another significant milestone in the delivery of a new industry which will make a significant contribution to improving national energy security, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and protecting consumers from the long-term volatility of the global hydrocarbon markets.”
A consortium spokesman explained: “The application represents the culmination of three years of development work, data gathering, extensive environmental studies and broad consultation. A full Environmental Impact Assessment has been undertaken, with the results presented in an Environmental Statement, which is available for public vewing at locations around East Lothian, Fife and Angus.“
Lindsay Leask, Senior Policy Manager for Scottish Renewables, welcomed the announcement and said: “This announcement is a landmark moment in Scotland’s progress towards unleashing its offshore energy potential as today’s news means that all the of the current offshore wind projects on the east coast of Scotland have now formally submitted planning applications.
“With a quarter of Europe’s offshore wind resources, and a world-renowned expertise in the offshore sector already, Scotland has a huge opportunity to benefit from offshore wind development in Scotland and beyond.
“Now that so many Scottish offshore wind projects are at different stages in the planning process, it is increasingly important for the offshore wind industry to receive clarity from the UK Government on the levels of future support available, and what the contractual risk will be, under Electricity Market Reform.”