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Scotland to get Europe’s largest onshore windfarm

Europe’s largest onshore windfarm is to be built in southern Scotland after being approved by the Scottish Government.

The 152-turbine Clyde windfarm near Abington, in South Lanarkshire, will be capable of powering up to 320,000 homes.

It is estimated the development will bring £600 million of investment while during construction the project is expected to create 200 jobs, with approximately 30 staff employed when fully operational.

The Clyde windfarm will be built in clusters of turbines on either side of the M74 motorway.

Speaking ahead of the World Renewable Energy Congress in Glasgow today, Alex Salmond, said: “The Clyde windfarm will represent a very important step in the development of renewable energy in Scotland and in meeting shared European targets. It is another step towards making Scotland the green energy capital of Europe.”

The First Minister added: “The Scottish Government has an ambitious target to generate 31 per cent of Scotland’s electricity demand from renewable sources by 2011 and 50 per cent by 2020.

“Today’s announcement makes it virtually certain that the 2011 target will be met early and exceeded by the end of this Parliamentary term and represents a significant milestone on the way to achieving the 2020 target.

“Scotland has a clear, competitive advantage in developing clean, green energy sources such as wind, wave and tidal power.

“We have put renewable energy at the heart of our vision of increasing sustainable, economic growth.

“Installed renewables capacity is already greater than nuclear capacity. But this announcement demonstrates that we are only at the start of the renewables revolution in Scotland. Combined with the crucial announcement of a new biomass plant in Fife on Friday, the Clyde declaration today makes this weekend one of the biggest advances ever in energy technology in Scotland.”

At present, the largest consented windfarm in Scotland is Whitelee, on Eaglesham Moor, south of Glasgow, which is currently under construction and will have a total capacity of 322MW. Currently the biggest operational windfarm in Europe is the Maranchon windfarm in Guadalajara, Spain which has a generating capacity of 208 MW.

The Herald

21 July 2008