For Immediate release 29/07/2016
SALMOND BACKS VATTENFALL INVESTMENT IN RENEWABLE FUTURE FOR SCOTLAND
MP for Gordon, Alex Salmond, has announced his backing of a £300m investment in the European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre, also known as Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm, by Swedish company Vattenfall.
As constituency member of parliament, Mr Salmond met with representatives of Vattenfall who provided an update on the innovative project and gave an outline of proposed community engagement for the project.
He stated that their plans to be a ‘good neighbour’ in the North East via liaison with local residents during the construction and operation of the project were encouraging.
Vattenfall have identified specialist personnel to deal with this aspect of the project, who will act as a focal point for engagement with the local community residents, landowners, the local supply chain and educational institutes.
The project, which consists of a 11-turbine 92.4MW offshore wind demonstrator is set to provide a significant boost to Scotland’s renewables industry.
Onshore construction will begin later this year near Blackdog, with offshore works commencing in 2017. The project is set for completion in spring 2018 with an operational lifespan of 20 years.
Commenting, Mr Salmond said:
"The benefits of this project will be wide-ranging. It is clear evidence of the Scottish Government’s commitment towards creating renewable energy opportunities. In the North East, our landscape is perfectly suited for such opportunities, and with Vattenfall’s investment, we will be able to see the future of energy production first hand.
"With the current downturn in the oil and gas sector, it is vital that we create more energy strings to our bow. One response to the this is to make sure the North East is an energy capital, not just an oil and gas capital. The Vattenfall project is just one way of securing this.
"I look forward to watching the project grow into a functioning symbol of Scotland’s commitment to maintaining a strong association with clean, dynamic energy production. Vattenfall’s turbines will make a fine addition to that particular stretch of North Eastern coastline."
Notes to Editors
Vattenfall (then called Kungliga Vattenfallsstyrelsen/Royal Waterfall Board) was founded in 1909 as a state-owned enterprise in Sweden. From its founding until the mid-1970s, Vattenfall's business was largely restricted to Sweden, with a focus on hydroelectric power generation.
Vattenfall has been investing in the UK since late 2008. It operates a number of on and offshore wind farms and has three projects under construction, including the EOWDC. By 2018 it will be operating over 1GW of installed wind and solar capacity in the UK.
Last year, Vattenfall’s CEO set the European energy company target of tripling wind capacity under operation to 7GW by 2025. The Swedish state-owned company has said it will prioritise investment in wind power and wants to invest €5bn in new wind power generation by 2020.
Vattenfall yesterday decided to invest more than £300m to build Scotland’s largest offshore wind test and demonstration facility.
Investment includes Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group’s 25% share for an undisclosed sum and become the 100% owner of Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm Limited, the company behind the European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre (EOWDC), also known as the Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm.
Together, Swedish energy company Vattenfall and its partner the Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group, have been developing the European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre. The £300m EOWDC will test and demonstrate cutting-edge offshore wind technology and once operational in 2018 will boost the industry’s drive to competitive clean power.
AREG had the vision in 2003 of a wind farm in Aberdeen Bay. In 2008 the EOWDC was conceived and in 2010 the project partners won a €40mn EU Grant. In 2011 an application for offshore consent for the 11 turbine project was submitted with Scottish Ministers granting permission in 2013. A number of legal challenges to the Scottish Government’s consent decision followed, which were eventually cleared in December 2015.
Onshore construction near Blackdog will start later this year and is due to complete late next year. Works offshore will commence in Aberdeen Bay in late 2017. The project is scheduled to generate first power in spring 2018 and operate for 20 years or more.