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UK top court gives go-ahead for Mainstream's 450MW offshore wind farm in Scotland

CTBR Staff Writer Published 08 November 2017

The UK Supreme Court has granted permission in favor of Mainstream Renewable Power for the construction of the 450MW Neart na Gaoithe (NnG) offshore wind farm off the coast of Scotland.

Conservationist group RSPB Scotland which stated that the wind farm threatened seabirds such as puffins, gannets and kittwakes, has lost the case.

Permission for the £2bn wind farm’s construction was given by the Scottish government in 2014. But RSPB challenged Scottish ministers’ planning approval for the project by seeking judicial intervention. 

In July this year, RSPB moved to the Inner House of the Court of Session, where an earlier decision was overturned and refused RSPB an application for appeal to the Supreme Court. Due to this ruling, RSPB had to appeal directly to the Supreme Court, Insider.co.uk reported.

Speaking about the Supreme Court’s decision, Mainstream Renewable Power CEO Andy Kinsella said: “After more than two and a half years, two court hearings and two rejected applications for leave to appeal by RSPB Scotland, we can finally focus on delivering the very significant benefits this project brings to the Scottish economy and its environment.”

“The NnG wind farm will displace 400,000 tonnes of CO2 each year. The RSPB has already delayed the project by two and a half years, during which time it could have displaced approximately 1 million tonnes of CO2, making a very significant contribution to the Scottish and UK Governments’ energy and climate targets.”

When the wind farm is up and running, it can produce enough green electricity to be supplied to 325,000 Scottish homes.

Construction work at the wind farm is expected to start in early 2018 and it could create 2000 local jobs during the four year construction period. It can also add £827m directly to the Scottish economy over its life time.

Image: Mainstream receives nod from Supreme Court to construct 450MW Scottish offshore wind farm. Photo: Courtesy of xedos4/FreeDigitalPhotos.net.