Iberdrola-Wind energy in Scotland: two new wind power projects

The company has secured all the pertinent authorisations from the Scottish government to proceed with both wind farm projects. The Whitelee and Black Law wind farm plants will have respective installed capacities of 539 and 193 megawatts (MW). Both wind farm facilities are located near Glasgow and will be able to supply double the population of this city – the largest in Scotland – when they come on stream.

Iberdrola Renovables, via its subsidiary ScottishPower Renewables, is already the leading developer and generator of onshore wind energy in the UK, with installed wind farm capacity of 932 MW at 26 wind farms.

Iberdrola Renovables, via its subsidiary Scottish Power Renewables, has secured the pertinent authorisations from the Scottish government to expand the Whitelee and Black Law wind farms, making them Scotland’s largest wind farms with respective installed capacities of 539 and 193 MW.

Both facilities are located in the vicinity of Glasgow and will be able to supply wind power to 440,000 homes (around 1.3 million people) when they come on stream. This is equivalent to nearly double the population of this city, the largest in Scotland.

Once complete these facilities will also have a significant environmental and social impact, since they will reduce CO2 emissions by some 1.14 million tonnes and create 70 jobs.

The company will start expanding its Whitelee wind power complex by 217 MW this year, reaching a total capacity of 539 MW. This project will cement Whitelee’s status as the biggest wind farm in Europe and one of the five largest worldwide.

Iberdrola Renovables will for the first time install ECO 100 model wind turbines with unit capacity of 3 MW, marking a significant technological milestone for the company.

The Whitelee wind farm, which came on stream in 2009, is located south of Glasgow and currently has installed capacity of 322 MW. It is one of the world’s flagship wind farms and also houses Scotland’s first renewable energy learning centre.

Once expanded, the complex will have annual output the equivalent of the electricity consumption of more than 300,000 households and will prevent the annual emission of 840,000 tonnes of CO2. The expanded facility is slated reach the new operational capacity in 2012.

This month the Scottish government granted Iberdrola Renovables permission to expand the Black Law wind farm by 69 MW to 193 MW. Construction is slated to commence in 2012 and is expected to be completed in 2014.

Black Law is located in Forth, Lanarkshire, 40 kilometres from Glasgow, and has been operational since 2005 with installed capacity of 124 MW. The company started planning the expansion of this wind farm in 2008 and, once operational, its output will be equivalent to the consumption of over 110,000 homes and it will prevent the annual emission of 300,000 tonnes of CO2.

The UK is one of Iberdrola Renovables’ key markets for the years ahead. Onshore, the company is now the leading wind power developer and generator in the country with 26 wind farms and total installed capacity of 932 MW.

Moreover, the company will spearhead the future development of offshore energy technologies in Europe, regarded as the second renewables revolution. To this end, the company has created an Offshore Business Division in Scotland to channel development of the large volume of marine wind energy facilities awarded to the company, which amount to around 12,000 MW worldwide.

In partnership with Vattenfall, Iberdrola Renovables holds the rights to build one of the world’s largest offshore wind farms in the UK, the East Anglia Array, with planned installed capacity of 7,200 MW. At the end of last year this project was given authorisation to connect to the British land-based grid operated by National Grid. This is the largest access to a grid ever granted for an Iberdrola Group project.

Having obtained this concession, work has now begun on the first phase of the East Anglia ONE project. Up to 400 state-of-the-art wind turbines will be brought on stream at the 1,200 MW facility, which will be located 43 kilometres off the coast of Suffolk in eastern England.

The company has a further 2,300 MW under development in the UK, including the 400 MW West of Duddon Sands facility (developed in partnership with Dong). Construction of this wind farm is slated to begin in 2013.

Iberdrola Renovables, with operations in 23 countries, built more renewable power capacity than any other company in 2010 with an additional 1,780 MW coming on stream. This consolidated its world leadership in the sector reflected in the largest installed capacity – 12,532 MW at the end of 2010 – and production – 25,400 gigawatt hours (GWh) last year.