Orkney Islands Council (OIC) has submitted a planning application for a six-turbine wind farm to be established at Quanterness, just outside Kirkwall.
The development is part of the local authority’s Community Wind Farm Project, which could also see council-owned wind farms built in Hoy and on Faray.
The council has said, if the proposals and sites are found to be appropriate and the project goes forward, it could generate significant income and community benefit for the county. OIC has also said all profit would stay in the islands and be used to aid in preserving and enhancing key services as well as providing a foundation for communities to drive transformational projects of their own.
OIC claims the wind farm projects would also allow the council to join other local developers in making a meaningful contribution to a Needs Case for a new interconnector for Orkney, thereby supporting the vital renewable energy industry in Orkney.
Planning applications for the Hoy and Faray projects are likely to follow in Summer and Autumn respectively, due to additional survey requirements for these sites. Public consultation events will be held shortly in these areas to present the latest plans and gather public views.
All three developments are substantial, and the turbines are of a height not used in Orkney before, being 149.9m tall at blade tip. The council says it recognises that the projects present a number of potential impacts and these must be weighed against the project’s potential benefits. Individuals will have different opinions on that balance and through the planning process have the opportunity to express their support or objections to the development.
Councillors agreed late last year that a request should be made to the Scottish Government to call-in the application on the grounds that the development is of national significance. That request has now been made and the council is awaiting a decision as to whether they will call in the application or not.
The full application documents are available through the council website, with more information available at the application search and submission page, here. For the ‘Orkney’s Community Wind Farm – Quanterness’ planning application search for 20/037/TPPMAJ.
Information on how to comment on a planning application – whether that be to support the proposal or object to it is available at Commenting on an Application. Comments can be submitted in writing, either by email to Development Management, online through the Council website www.orkney.gov.uk or by post to: Development Management, Council Offices, School Place, Kirkwall, KW15 1NY.
Hard copies of the application are also available to view at the One Stop Shop at the Council Offices in Kirkwall and at the Orkney Library and Archive in Kirkwall.
More information on Orkney’s Community Wind Farm project is available on the Orkney’s Community Wind Farm Project webpage.