WIND power on Scotland’s three major islands is to be given a boost by
ministers in an effort to make it less costly to send renewable energy to
the mainland.

Energy Secretary Ed Davey will announce today that the guaranteed price for
wind power in Orkney, Shetland and the Western Isles will be ­increased to
make it more cost effective to deliver.

It follows a campaign by ­politicians and developers in the island
communities to compensate for their relative isolation. Davey said that the
strike price will now be increased to £115 per megawatt, £10 above the
guaranteed sum mainland farms can earn.

“We think it is going to give a big boost to these communities,” he said.
He also claimed the move was evidence of the UK working for Scotland.

“The costs of this will be borne by all the consumers in the whole of the
UK. If this high strike price had to be borne by Scottish consumers it
would have had a bigger impact on peoples’ bills,” he said. The extra
subsidy will not apply to off-shore farms or other forms of renewables, he
said.

This is the first time that the UK government has announced a strike price
targeted at a particular UK area.

Davey said that it reflected the unique circumstances and potential within
the islands. He added: “An independent ­report showed the specific
­circumstances of the Scottish lslands required a different ­approach that
breaks the mould of the wider UK strike price mechanism, and we are
delivering that.”


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