Hydropower, Offshore, Onshore, Wind Power

UK Wind Power Portfolio Reaches 2 GW

With the recent commissioning of a turbine in Scotland, the UK has surpassed the two gigawatts (GW) of installed capacity landmark, making it one of seven countries in the world to have done so, after Germany, Spain, U.S., India, Denmark, Italy, UK, and the Netherlands.

“We want 20% of our electricity to come from these green sources,” said Secretary of State for Trade and Industry Alistair Darling, “and we are working hard on removing any barriers to achieving that aim. Wave, tidal and offshore wind power can make a significant contribution in future but onshore wind energy is delivering capacity here and now.” The 36-turbine 72-megawatt (MW) Braes of Doune wind farm near Stirling was developed by Airtricity and constructed by Vestas Celtic and Alfred McAlpine. It will generate green electricity for 45,000 Scottish Gas customers. “We are delighted that our new 72 MW Braes of Doune wind farm is playing a pivotal role in achieving a UK generation record of two gigawatts of wind power,” said Airtricity Chief Executive Eddie O’Connor. Airtricity’s two operational wind farms in Scotland and our planned on- and offshore wind farm developments in the UK will help the country reach its renewables targets for both 2010 and 2020.” With Government’s target for 10% of electricity supplies from renewables less than three years away, 2007 is a critical year for the wind industry if it is to meet widely held expectations of it as the main contributor to meeting targets. 771 MW is already under construction but a potential 6% (7.8 GW) of UK electricity supplies is still caught in the planning system from onshore wind projects alone, an issue that needs to be resolved rapidly if the country is to reach 3 gigawatts in record time and keep pace with other the countries flying the renewables flag. “There is still much work to do if we are to achieve the Government’s target of delivering 10% of our electricity from renewable sources by 2010,” said BWEA Chief Executive Maria McCaffery.