by Allister Thomas
Work has been completed at the largest offshore windfarm in Scotland.
After three years of work, developers said the last of the 84 turbines at
Beatrice has now been installed on time and under budget.
The project in the Outer Moray Firth, around eight miles off the coast of
Caithness, has enough capacity to generate clean energy for more than
Last month, SSE confirmed that the project would create up to 90 full time
jobs once completed, with the majority being based in Wick.
Each of the 84 turbines stand taller than the London Eye, at 188metres from
sea level to blade tip.
Jim Smith, managing director of SSE Renewables said: “Completing the
offshore construction at Beatrice is a testament to the capabilities of SSE
Renewables and our project partners.
“Delivering one of Scotland’s largest ever private investments on time and
under budget is a fantastic achievement given its complexity and we would
like to thank everyone who has helped us make the project a reality.”
SSE will manage operations and maintenance from a new base in Wick, which
it said comes following an investment of more than £20m to redevelop the
Beatrice Offshore Windfarm Limited (BOWL) is a joint venture between SSE
Renewables (40%), Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (35%) and Red Rock
BOWL said more than £1.1billion of construction spend was in the UK, with
around half of that in Scotland.
Those contracted included CS Wind’s Machrihanish factory, Global Energy
Group’s Nigg Energy Park, Bi-Fab in Fife, Babcock Marine in Rosyth, JDR
Cables in Hartlepool and Siemens Gamesa in Hull.
Beatrice is the largest windfarm in the world to use jacket foundations –
weighing around 1,000tonnes each and installed in water depths of more than
Scottish energy minister, Paul Wheelhouse, said: “The last of the 84
turbines being installed on Scotland’s first commercial scale offshore wind
farm is an important landmark for offshore wind in Scottish waters and a
fantastic achievement for SSE and its project partners.
“Projects like the 588MW Beatrice offshore wind farm will add to what is a
growing industry for Scotland, and the project has already supported key
supply chain businesses in Scotland, such as Global Energy Group, CS Wind
and BiFab, among others.
“Projects such as this also have great potential for further economic
benefit and job creation. The Scottish Government is determined to ensure
the supply chain and economic benefits of this industry will be fully
realised as we see consented sites built, and take forward further
licensing opportunities to develop offshore wind in Scotland’s waters.”