Three offshore wind farm projects announced for waters near Shetland

They are expected to generate 2.8GW of electricity.

Three offshore wind farm projects announced for waters near Shetland

Agreements for three wind farm projects around Shetland have been announced.

Covering an area of just over 560km2, the developments are expected to generate 2.8GW of electricity.

The announcement was made on Monday after 14 applications as part of Crown Estate Scotland’s ScotWind clearing process.

A sum of £56m will be paid by the successful applicants in option fees and passed to the Scottish Government for public spending.

The three projects’ initial supply chain commitments indicate an average of £1.2bn investment in Scotland per gigawatt of capacity built.

Colin Palmer, director of Marine at Crown Estate Scotland, stated that the projects have “significant potential” to boost progress towards Scotland becoming a net zero country.

“This is a fantastic result for Shetland and for Scotland,” said Palmer.

“These projects have significant potential to really boost Scotland’s progress towards its net zero targets, including in relation to the opportunity around green hydrogen. 

“Taking these three into account, the 20 ScotWind projects now total up to 27.6GW with initial supply chain commitments indicating an average of £1.4bn investment in Scotland per gigawatt of capacity built.   

“This result is further proof that Scotland is leading globally on offshore wind, deploying new technology and exploiting the potential of hydrogen.”  

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said the projects will provide “billions” in rental revenue once they become operational.

“ScotWind will deliver a new era in Scotland’s offshore wind industry, representing the world’s largest commercial round for floating offshore wind and breaks new ground in putting large-scale floating wind technology on the map at Gigawatt scale,” she said.

“It will provide several billion pounds more in rental revenues once projects become operational, to be invested for the benefit of the people of Scotland.”

The First Minister outlined the need to become less reliant on traditional energy sources.

“The importance of accelerating the transition to renewable energy sources, including hydrogen, has been brought into sharp relief by Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine and the cost of living crisis.

“In Scotland, nearly 100% of our net electricity demand already comes from renewable sources and we are focused on reducing energy demand and accelerating the deployment of renewable energy.”

Sturgeon said that offshore wind would bring benefits for all of Scotland.

“The Scottish Government sees offshore wind – and the hydrogen production which we hope will be enabled by offshore wind – as one of the most important economic and environmental opportunities we have,” said the First Minister.

“It can reduce our carbon emissions, improve our energy security, and create tens of thousands of high quality jobs.

“It will bring benefits for all of Scotland – but it will be especially important in the north east, and a crucial part in the transition from being the oil and gas capital of Europe, to being one of the net zero capitals of Europe.”