- ScottishPower announces plans to develop a major new wind power project in central Scotland.
- Plans add new wind power capacity of 165MW, enough to power 100,000 homes.*
- Project expected to create 600 jobs at its peak and 280 long-term jobs.**
- It follows parent company Iberdrola’s acquisition of French renewable energy company Aalto Power last week, and taking 100% ownership of the Saint-Brieuc offshore wind farm in March.
- ScottishPower is the first integrated energy company in the UK to shift completely to 100% wind generation – owning and operating renewable energy to provide to its electricity customers.
As part of ScottishPower’s commitment to investing in the UK’s green economic recovery and to contributing to meeting Net Zero targets, the company has signed two separate agreements to develop wind farms in central Scotland that could see investment of over £150 million.
The acquisition of wind farm developments from local individual shareholders of 3R Energy and Mitchell Energy Ltd. will see a combined capacity of 165MW of new clean electricity generation developed near Douglas in South Lanarkshire, 35 miles south of Glasgow. When added to a similar 55MW project in the area majority owned by ScottishPower, these developments will create a clean energy cluster in South Lanarkshire totalling 220MW. The project also includes the repowering of Scotland’s very first commercial wind farm, Hagshaw Hill, which ScottishPower originally took ownership of in 1996. It is expected that the overall project could create 600 peak jobs and 280 long-term jobs.
It is the third green energy deal since March for the Iberdrola Group. Last week the company acquired the French renewable energy firm Aalto Power for €100 million. This deal secured 118MW of operational onshore wind power in France and a project portfolio of 636MW in various stages of development. In March, Iberdrola also increased its stake in the €2.4 billion Saint-Brieuc offshore wind farm in France, from 70% to 100%, which will have a capacity of 496MW.
Ignacio Galán, ScottishPower Chairman and Iberdrola CEO, said: “As we begin to emerge from the coronavirus crisis, investment in green infrastructure can quickly be delivered, creating jobs and offering immediate economic and environmental benefits. This will help to support the UK’s overall recovery at this critical time.
“Globally it is essential that the financial recovery is aligned with climate goals. As today´s announcement demonstrates, companies like ours remain committed to major clean energy investments, fostering quality employment and driving the energy transition forward.”
Keith Anderson, ScottishPower CEO, said: “Onshore wind is a crucial tool in tackling climate change, and renewable energy is increasingly becoming the backbone of the UK’s power mix. As one of the UK’s leading renewables developers, ScottishPower is committed to investing in a green economic recovery that speeds up progress towards Net Zero.
“Twenty-five years ago we took on Scotland’s first commercial windfarm, which helped to kick-start a clean energy industry that now employs a quarter of a million people in the UK. We see the regeneration of this project as a catalyst for launching a green recovery for the UK economy.”
Notes to Editor
- *103,104 homes per year, based on figures from the BEIS Digest of UK Energy Statistics (July 2019) of an expected average onshore wind load capacity factor of 26.6% and an average annual domestic electricity usage of 3,729kWh.
- ** Job figures based on BVG Associates’ The Power of Onshore Wind report (June 2018).
- Hagshaw Hill Repowering Ltd has Section 36 planning consent for up to 14 turbines with max tip height of 200m, a 20MW battery storage facility and a grid connection already secured. Under this deal, the existing Hagshaw Hill site will be expanded and repowered over two phases (2022-2027) across existing and additional land, increasing the site to 65MW in total.
- Contracts for turbines and civils have not yet been secured for either project and will be tendered for in the detailed engineering phases of the projects in 2021/2022.
- ScottishPower’s parent company Iberdrola S.A. announced in its Q1 2020 results statement on 29 April 2020 that it planned to accelerate its investments to contribute to economic activity and support employment as part of the green recovery.