Scottish Windfarm Plan Could be Turned Down due to RSPB Concerns

Major renewable developers are demanding that Scottish ministers take action urgently to make sure that a big windfarm project off the coast of Fife goes ahead.

The RSPB has argued that the scheme will be damaging for sea birds and was given a judicial review earlier in the month; however developers are trying to resolve this legal action.

The proposed Neart na Gaoithe offshore wind power station is estimated to cost around £2 billion and is one of four offshore wind projects to have its consent from Scottish ministers successfully challenged.

In a letter to the Scotsman newspaper, senior executives from InterGen, Siemens, Europower, Marubeni and Mainstream have all said how disappointed they are at the judicial review.

In the letter, it states that the project will create hundreds of jobs and calls on ministers to immediately outline how they will address the outcome of the judicial review.

It says: “It is now for Scottish ministers urgently to set out how they will address the result of the judicial review positively to ensure the opportunity is grasped, and to work with us and our partners to ensure that this nationally significant project is properly consented and brought into operation in the very near term.”

The five companies say that the project will play an important role in delivering the Scottish government’s target of all electricity in Scotland to be sources from renewables by 2020, along with the wider energy and climate objectives set out by the UK government.

The RSPB said that there were concerns about how the turbines would impact on local sea birds that breed throughout the coastline of Scotland, including the colonies of razorbill, puffin, kittiwake and gannet.

The area is also home to the biggest gannet colony in the world on the island of Brass Rock, which is home to 150,000 birds.


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BDC 305 Jun 2023