Press release | 2013-01-14 | 15:38 PM

EOWDC partners submit planning application for onshore works

The partners behind the more than £230million European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre (EOWDC) have submitted a planning application to Aberdeenshire Council for onshore works.

The application for a cable route and substation compound on land to the south-east of Blackdog village would form part of the onshore connection between the proposed EOWDC and the National Electricity Transmission System.

It has been submitted by Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm Ltd (AOWFL) - the joint venture by Vattenfall, Europe’s sixth largest generator of electricity, and innovative private-public partnership Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group (AREG) which are driving forward the EOWDC project along with Technip Offshore Wind Ltd, a leading provider of specialist offshore wind installation and project management services.

AOWFL also anticipates submitting a planning application for onshore works to Aberdeen City Council after identifying a second option for a cable route and substation compound.

Iain Todd, project spokesman for the EOWDC, said: "The onshore works are a key element of the EOWDC which will deliver major economic benefits to Aberdeen City and Shire, Scotland and the UK. It is also widely recognised as a centre of European importance, helping to accelerate the development of the offshore wind industry.”

As part of the application, AOWFL and Aberdeenshire Council will be conducting a public consultation with the local community between January 18 and February 8.

The planning application submission comes three months after a Scoping Opinion, supported by a scoping report presenting proposals for the onshore works, was completed. This also involved AOWFL and Aberdeenshire Council inviting comment on the proposals from consultees and key stakeholders in the area to help inform the on-going site layout design and environmental assessment process.  

As part of its consultation, representatives from AOWF also attended a meeting of Belhelvie Community Council in October, 2012, when they pre-informed members about the planning application which is supported by an Environmental Statement including an Environmental Impact Assessment.
Mr Todd said: “The consultation process ensures that the local community and key stakeholders have the opportunity to express their views on the proposals for the onshore works at an early stage, in advance of a planning application being submitted."

The onshore works are likely to consist of two onshore substation buildings with associated electrical infrastructure to be located on land to the south of Hareburn Terrace and underground cables between the substations and the sea.  

The 11-turbine EOWDC will deploy a number of ‘first run of production’ Round 3 offshore wind turbine models to demonstrate their capabilities.

Recent Government reports have concluded that, with an enormous ramping up of installed offshore wind capacity expected in UK waters by the end of this decade, deployment centres like the EOWDC will play a vital role in helping to reduce the cost of generation in offshore wind and deliver more than £7billion in added value to the UK economy. The EOWDC consortium believes that the centre will place the North East and Scotland at the forefront of the globally-competitive offshore wind industry.
The EU has awarded a grant of €40million under the European Energy Programme for Recovery (EEPR) for the development of the EOWDC. Last year, Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm Ltd AOWFL also announced the signing of working agreements with six potential suppliers to deploy state-of-the-art wind turbines at the ground-breaking EOWDC site and several months later, it was announced that all statutory consultees had lifted their objections to the project.

More information about the project

European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre