Developers delay 100-MW Scottish offshore wind plan by 2 yrs
Dec 5, 2013 - The grid connection date for the 100-MW European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre (EOWDC) project in Aberdeen Bay, Scotland, has been postponed by two years to 2017, Swedish utility Vattenfall said Thursday.
The delay is intended to give the project developers more time to seek potential investment partners and to solve ongoing onshore planning issues. They also need to deal with a court battle launched by Donald Trump who wants to have the Scottish government's approval for the project overturned.
EOWDC is planned to include 11 turbines and their connecting cables. The installation’s main function will be to allow offshore wind developers and firms from the supply chain to test wind technology in a real environment. Vattenfall holds a 75% stake in the project, while Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group and Technip Offshore Wind are the other project partners.
The project was given the green light by the Scottish government in March 2013 but since then it has faced several challenges. In May Vattenfall confirmed it would reduce its stake due to capital constraints so the partners need to find new investors for the over-GBP-230-million (USD 376m/EUR 277m) initiative. In October Aberdeenshire councillors gave the thumbs-down to a substation proposal for the hamlet of Blackdog in Scotland which is a key part of the EOWDC project. In November Donald Trump presented his case against the project at a four-day hearing at the Court of Session in Edinburgh. The property tycoon is opposing the development as it will be located close to his planned GBP-750-million golf resort in the area. He is threatening to scrap that huge project if the wind farm goes ahead.
“As part of this process, the project partners have always been aware that its aspirations to generate first power by late 2015 might not be in step with the progress of the project and indeed, that of the industry,” said Peter Wesslau, UK country manager for Vattenfall and a director of AOWFL.