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SPR hosts island drop-in events for new MachairWind offshore windfarm

19/10/2022

East Anglia ONE offshore windfarm

Local people on Islay, Colonsay, and Jura will get the opportunity to find out more about a new offshore windfarm being developed by ScottishPower Renewables (SPR) at a series of drop-in events being hosted on the islands next week.

Earlier this year, Crown Estate Scotland awarded SPR the rights to develop an offshore windfarm off the coast of Argyll.

The new offshore windfarm – MachairWind – has a proposed capacity of 2GW, which is enough clean, green electricity to power the equivalent of more than 2 million homes across the UK.

This will be SPR’s first offshore windfarm in the region – and first project of its kind in Scottish waters. The project will build on SPR’s long-standing presence and positive track record of investing in, and working with, local communities and businesses across Argyll & Bute.

SPR is hosting three public drop-in events between Tuesday 25 October and Thursday 27 October to give local people, communities and businesses the chance to find out more about the project, meet the team and understand how they can help shape a cleaner and greener future for us all.

The events are:

  • Jura: 12 noon-3pm on Tuesday 25 October – Jura Village Hall, Craighouse
  • Colonsay: 12 noon-3pm on Wednesday 26 October – Colonsay Village Hall, Scalasaig
  • Islay: 3pm-6pm on Thursday 27 October – Islay Gaelic Centre, Gartnatra

SPR’s Senior Project Manager for MachairWind, Kiera Wilson, said: “We have been working with local people, communities and businesses across Argyll & Bute for more than 20 years through the delivery of our onshore windfarms, so it’s really exciting to now be bringing offshore wind to this area where we’re known to be a responsible developer and a good neighbour.

“While it’s still early days for the project, we want to give local people and businesses the opportunity to be informed and involved from the very outset, so we look forward to meeting and speaking with as many people as possible on Colonsay, Islay and Jura at these events.

“MachairWind will play an important part in tackling the climate emergency, driving down carbon emissions and increasing the UK’s energy security. The project will result in more green electricity being generated in the UK, for the UK, and it will also make a positive and lasting difference for those who live and work in the local region. 

“So, whether you’re interested in exploring job or supply chain opportunities, or just want to know more about what this exciting green project could mean for the islands, please come along to meet the team and find out more.”

George Dean, Director of Islay Energy Trust (IET), commented: “There is a lot of activity on Islay on the Carbon Neutral Islands project, and we need to understand all the issues and the potential ways we can decarbonise in the coming years. There are no easy answers, but the prospect of a major offshore windfarm opens up an exciting range of opportunities for the island. ScottishPower Renewables and IET have collaborated in the past, and they are now demonstrating their intention to fully engage with us on all aspects of their huge investment plan.

“I encourage the community on Islay, as well as Jura and Colonsay, to attend their drop-in sessions and ask all the questions they can, and ensure that SPR develop a clear understanding of how we might derive benefits from their work.”

Anyone who is unable to attend the events can keep up to date on the MachairWind website: www.machairwind.co.uk.

Further regional events are also being planned for 2023.

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