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Consent for Scotland's third largest wind farm  

Consent for a wind farm in Perthshire capable of meeting electricity demand for more than 100,000 homes was granted today by Ministers.

The 68 turbine Griffin wind farm near Aberfeldy will have a generating capacity of 204 Megawatts (MW) of electricity.

Energy Minister Jim Mather said:

“Renewables capacity is already greater than the installed capacity of nuclear in Scotland. The decision to approve Griffin windfarm is an important milestone in the Government’s energy strategy for Scotland – which will include the whole renewable mix – from biomass to the energy we can generate from wave and tide.

“This wind farm will have the capacity to meet electricity demand for more than 100,000 homes – further demonstration of Scotland’s vast renewable energy potential. There is no doubt that this country can become the green energy capital of Europe.

“Whether it is onshore or offshore wind, tidal, wave, biomass, clean coal or carbon capture technology, Scotland has a powerful competitive advantage in clean, green sources of energy. And the Scottish Government is commited to driving forward a diverse and balanced non-nuclear energy strategy.

“In doing so, we will help tackle climate change without adding to the burden of toxic radioactive waste that new nuclear power would bring.”

ENERGY STATISTICS

The Scottish Government’s Energy Consents Unit is currently processing 40 renewable project applications – 31 wind farm and nine hydro projects.

In respect of applications under section 36 of the Electricity Act, current renewable applications to Ministers amount to a total of 4.34 Gigawatts. which are all at various stages of the consents process and still to be determined.

The Unit has also provided pre-application “scoping” opinions for a further two Gigawatts of potential renewable development.

To give a scale of the potential energy quantities involved, 6.34 Gigawatts would be more than enough to power all of Scotland’s homes, and is 2.3 times the current installed renewables capacity of 2730 Megawatts.

Ten energy project proposals have now been determined by this Scottish Government. This includes consent for five renewable projects, including Harestanes near Moffat, which will be Scotland’s second largest wind farm.

Installed renewables capacity in Scotland is now 2730 Megawatts. Nuclear capacity is 2400 Megawatts.

In Scotland between 2005 and 2006:

* Electricity generated by renewable sources (apart from hydro natural flow) increased by 46 per cent
* As a result of unplanned outages, nuclear’s share of generation fell from 38 per cent to 26 per cent in Scotland
* In 2006, Scotland could have supplied 92.5 per cent of its electricity needs from non-nuclear sources
* Electricity generated in Scotland increased by nine per cent

In 2005, Scotland exported 15 per cent of the electricity generated to consumers elsewhere in the UK, but this rose to 20 per cent in 2006
* Continuation of the rate of growth in these other renewables would result in achievement of the Scottish Government’s renewable electricity targets of 31 per cent by 2011 and 50 per cent by 2020

Any proposal to construct, extend or operate a wind farm with a generation capacity in excess of 50 Megawatt (MW) requires the consent of Scottish Ministers under Section 36 of the Electricity Act 1989.

Based on the projected generation output figures, the developers of the Griffin wind farm estimate that it will be capable of meeting the demand for 114,000 homes.

However, the Scottish Government announced a new target to generate 50 per cent of Scotland’s electricity from renewables sources by 2020 on 27 November 2007.

The new calculation method takes account of grid transmission losses between the source of electricity and consumers, which average 12 per cent. The projected generation output figures have therefore been reduced to show the wind farm is capable of meeting the electricity demand of 114,000 homes – 12 per cent = 100,320 homes.

The Scottish Government

31 January 2008

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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