Delays Mean Viking Energy Will Not Flow South Until 2018

Shetland windfarm to feed power into  the grid by Nov 2018

Shetland’s huge onshore windfarm will begin construction in early 2016 and will be ongoing until 2019. The delay is due to the renegotiation of the size of the development with planners and – more significantly – the delay in the installation of the HVDC interconnector to the mainland. It now looks likely that  the critical 600MW interconnector cable from Shetland will make landfall in Caithness, so further upgrades to transmission lines in the far NE of the mainland may also be required.

Simulated drive-throughThe reduction in the number of turbines from 127 to 103 means the project is now likely to earn £20 million per year for the islanders, down slightly from the original estimate of £23 million.

Viking Energy is a 50-50 joint venture between Scottish & Southern Energy and the local community through a charitable trust. The partnership was granted planning consent for a potential 457 MW  development  by Scottish Ministers in April last year. However, the consent decision is currently being challenged in the Court of Session by Sustainable Shetland, who  have lodged a judicial review.

Viking’s chairman Alan Bryce said that income projections had been reduced after Scottish Ministers had deleted 24 turbines from the original planning application.

However, he added that the company calculated that an additional £6 million a year would be received by crofters and landowners while a further £5 million per annum would be paid out for services sourced locally and in wages to the permanent workforce of around 30 people.


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