By Mark Williamson Group Business Correspondent
A Scottish renewable energy firm has started construction work on a
windfarm it reckons will be the first in the country developed without the
benefit of subsidy.
Muirhall Energy expects the Crossdykes Wind Farm near Langholm in Dumfries
and Galloway to start producing power from September 2020.
The 10-turbine windfarm is expected to generate enough energy to power
45,000 homes.
The progress of the project will be watched closely amid hopes it could
inspire developers to build other windfarms in Scotland.
The future of the onshore sector was thrown into question after land-based
windfarms were largely barred from receiving support under official subsidy
programmes from 2016.
Lanarkshire-based Muirhall and project partner WWS Renewables secured
funding for Crossdykes from Close Brothers investment bank.
The bank’s decision signalled confidence in the economics of onshore
windfarms.
“This is a landmark moment for onshore wind in Scotland,” said energy
minister Paul Wheelhouse.
Noting the Scottish Government strongly supports onshore wind, he added: “I
very much hope this will be followed by many more similar developments as
we seek to address the climate emergency.”
However, Muirhall’s managing director Chris Walker noted: “Access to the
Contract for Difference or some other support mechanism would make a huge
difference to the economics of the sector, encouraging the build-out of
some of the more challenging consented sites.”
Founded by Mr Walker in 2009, Muirhall Energy has interests in windfarm
projects across the UK.
The firm has offered members of the community in the area of the Crossdykes
windfarm to buy up to 10 per cent of the project.
Mr Walker said: “We have had tremendous support from the communities around
the wind farm.”

 

 


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