Mainstream gets green light for Scottish wind farm

Mainstream is led by former Airtricity founder Eddie O’Connor

Mainstream chief Eddie O Connor. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Mainstream chief Eddie O Connor. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

 

Scottish ministers have given Irish-based Mainstream Renewable Power the green light for a €1.9 billion offshore wind farm development in the North Sea.

Mainstream, led by former Airtricity founder and one-time Bord na Móna chief executive, Eddie O’Connor, has been given permission to build and operate a 450-mega watt wind farm in the outer Forth Estuary close to Fife.

The Dublin-based company said yesterday the wind farm, dubbed Neart na Gaoithe, will have the capacity to generate enough electricity to power 325,000 homes, more than the number of individual households in the Scottish capital.

The farm will be made up of 75 wind turbines and occupy about 80sq km and will lie about 15km off the Fife coast.

The project will cost £1.5 billion (€1.9 billion) and qualifies for European Investment Bank funding and for a UK treasury guarantee scheme for infrastructure.

“Today’s announcement is of particular importance for Scotland because it is the first time a wind farm will be built in Scottish waters with the purpose of supplying Scottish homes and businesses with renewable energy,” Mr O’Connor said.