ScottishPower Renewables, April 25, 2008
ScottishPower Renewables has submitted a Section 36 application to the Scottish Government for an extension of Whitelee Windfarm on Eaglesham Moor by a further 36 turbines – developing the site beyond the 140 turbines that are currently being constructed as part of Europe’s largest on-shore windfarm project.
If approved, the new turbines will increase the output of clean green energy from Whitelee by up to a maximum of 130 megawatts – enough on its own to power up to 73,000 homes – taking the total output from the windfarm up to 452MW.
Simon Christian, Project Director at ScottishPower Renewables, said: “Whitelee is an excellent location for a windfarm development and we believe that there is scope to extend what is already an ambitious renewable energy project. Not only is it sited exceptionally well for good wind conditions, it is also close to grid connections, transport links and will be able to directly serve the nearby large population centres of west central Scotland.
A full consultation process is now underway, which will involve presenting the development plans to local community groups and engaging statutory consultees such as Scottish Natural Heritage and the RSPB.
Under Scottish Government guidelines, the process for considering the application should take approximately nine months, with a decision therefore expected to be made early next year.
There are currently 22 wind turbines at Whitelee already connected to the grid, generating enough green energy to power over 30,000 homes. The initial 140 turbine construction phase of the project is scheduled for completion in Summer 2009. ScottishPower Renewables also recently announced plans for a multi-million pounds Visitor Centre at Whitelee, which will also open in Summer 2009. All 36 turbines on the extension site fall in the East Ayrshire Council administrative area.