World’s most powerful turbines to go up near Trump resort

The 190m-tall Vestas V164 is the world's most powerful offshore wind turbine. Picture: Vestas
The 190m-tall Vestas V164 is the world's most powerful offshore wind turbine. Picture: Vestas
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The world’s most powerful turbines are set to be erected at a controversial offshore wind farm off the coast of Donald Trump’s Aberdeenshire golf resort.

The devices, which are nearly 200m tall, will be part of the European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre (EOWDC).

The scheme are to be sited less than two miles off the coast at Aberdeen Bay, not far from a golf course owned by the US presidential candidate.

The scheme will have an installed capacity of up to 100 megawatts, with each of the 11 turbines able to power around 7,500 households a day.

The EOWDC has been the subject of a long-running legal battle with the billionaire property tycoon, who claims it will spoil views from his Trump International Golf Links, on the Menie estate near Balmedie.

Mr Trump’s attempts to overturn Scottish Government planning consent for the wind farm have repeatedly been defeated in court, most recently in December 2015, and caused a high-profile row with former First Minister Alex Salmond.

Last winter’s case was third time he has used the courts in an attempt to halt the project after raising an action in the Court of Session in 2013 and then appealing its judgement in 2015.

But he recently vowed he would “continue to fight this proposal on every possible front”.

Preparatory offshore works have been completed at the Aberdeenshire site, and it is thought the wind farm will be operational by the end of 2018.

Vattenfall is leading the development of the EOWDC and plans to invest £300 million in the project, which will become Scotland’s largest offshore testing site for wind turbines.

The V164 turbines, made by Danish firm MHI Vestas, broke the record for wind energy production in when a single unit generated enough electricity to supply 13,500 homes for 24 hours.

Vattenfall’s Adam Ezzamel, project director for the EOWDC, says the V164s are part of the company’s vision for the wind farm to be a world-leading “hub of innovation”.

He added: “The turbines will be paired with game-changing suction bucket foundations, representing an industry first, and will contribute significantly to reducing operational costs as well as help boost the industry’s drive to competitive clean power.”

Jens Tommerup, chief executive MHI Vestas, said, “MHI Vestas is shaping the future of the offshore wind market with game-changing technologies that spur innovation to drive down the cost of offshore wind power for the whole industry.”

The development has been welcomed by industry leaders as further evidence that the nation is at the cutting edge in renewable energy.

“As a developing industry offshore wind has huge potential, and innovation is crucial if we are to reduce the cost of the electricity generated by this technology,” said Jenny Hogan, director of policy at Scottish Renewables.

“Deploying these cutting-edge turbines in Scotland helps cement the UK’s position as the global leader in the sector, and will help this project make the most of the wind resource in a harbour which has been synonymous with energy since the 1970s.”

At 190m tall with 80m-long blades, the V164 is the largest wind turbine currently in production and the second biggest ever built.

The largest, reaching 195m, is installed at the Methil Offshore Wind Farm in Fife.

Mr Trump, who also owns Turnberry golf resort in Ayrshire, last visited his Aberdeenshire course in late June, when he enjoyed a private dinner with media baron Rupert Murdoch and his latest wife Jerry Hall.