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Airtricity gets green light for Dalswinton windfarm  

Work began a few days ago on Airtricity’s third windfarm in Scotland, a 30MW windfarm near Dalswinton, 17km north-west of Dumfries. On completion, the project will generate green electricity for about 18,000 homes. Contracts totalling close to £30million have just been signed by Airtricity with the three main contractors for the project. REpowerUK Ltd, a joint venture of one of Germany’s leading wind turbine manufacturers, REpower Systems AG, and British engineering company Peter Brotherhood of Edinburgh, will supply and instal the 15 2MW turbines and towers.

Carillion JM gets civil infrastructure and electrical works and United Utilities Networks has been awarded grid connection works.

“Work will start later this week on the Dalswinton windfarm site and we expect the windfarm to be in operation producing green electricity in a year’s time from now,” said Airtricity Scotland’s CEO, Alan Baker. “The Dalswinton windfarm, and our other windfarm projects operating and in the pipeline in Scotland, will help the Scottish Executive meet the challenges of climate change and its ambitious target of 40% electricity generated by renewables by 2020.”

A key aspect of the Dalswinton windfarm is a habitat management plan, which includes 50 hectares of heather planting. This will make a significant contribution to the council’s local bio-diversity plan, some 25% of the planned 200 acres of heather across Dumfries and Galloway.

“During the construction and operation of the windfarm, Airtricity and our contractors will work closely with the local community. We have established good relations with the local community councils,” said Baker.

Dalswinton is the second Airtricity project to receive the green light in recent weeks, albeit this one pales in terms of scale and complexity when measured against the 500MW Greater Gabbard scheme, which is set to be the UK’s first full-scale offshore windfarm outside territorial waters.

It was in February that Greater Gabbard Offshore Winds Ltd (GGOWL), Airtricity’s joint venture with Fluor, received permission for construction of an offshore windfarm to be located 25km off the coast of Suffolk in the Outer Thames Estuary.

The planned windfarm will produce 500MW of electricity via 140 wind turbines sited around the Inner Gabbard and The Galloper sandbanks.

Although it will be the first commercial UK offshore windfarm to be built outside territorial waters and will provide green electricity for more than 415,000 homes, Talisman’s DownVind project, centred on the Outer Moray Firth Beatrice field, is first in pilot terms.


2 April 2007

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