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Mainstream Renewable Power in talks to close £2bn Scottish offshore wind farm deal

Published 27 January 2016

Mainstream Renewable Power is in talks with a consortium led by power company InterGen to close the £2bn 450MW offshore wind farm deal in Scotland and take it into construction phase.

Mainstream wind farm

The consortium includes Siemens Project Ventures, the Marguerite Fund and Infrared Capital.

The Neart na Gaoithe offshore wind farm, which is located in the Outer Forth Estuary in the North Sea, gained approval for a 15-year Contract for Difference (CfD) from the UK's National Grid in March 2015. The contract gives the wind farm an inflation-linked strike price for the power produced.

The project secured offshore planning consent from Scottish Ministers in October 2014 and it is slated to be fully commissioned and generating electricity by 2020, after it passes the judicial review by Scottish courts, which is currently under consideration.

Mainstream COO Andy Kinsella said: "This £2 billion pound infrastructure project has very significant benefits for Scotland. It will create over 500 jobs during construction and over 100 permanent jobs during the 25 year operational phase.

"More than £540 million will be directly spent in Scotland during the construction phase and a further £610m will be spent during the operational phase.

"Neart na Gaoithe will generate the cheapest electricity from any offshore wind farm in the UK. Several PPA offers have been received and are under negotiation for the full output of the plant and for the full duration of the CfD contract.

"Our CfD strike price of £114.38 is the lowest in the UK and between 18% and 26% below the FID enabling CFD contracts previously awarded. This strongly underpins government policy of driving the price of renewables down for the benefit of consumers.

"All the building blocks are now in place to deliver this power plant into operation by 2020; all consents have been received; the CfD was awarded; the technology and construction contractors are in place and, very significantly, the required debt funding for the project has been sourced from commercial banks."

According to Mainstream, one-fourth of the project costs will be met by equity, with £ 1.5bn drawn from loans, reported gcaptain.com.

Image: Mainstream prepares to close wind farm deal. Photo: Courtesy of xedos4/FreeDigitalPhotos.net.