Kincardine Offshore Windfarm Limited (KOWL) has opted to use Kishorn Dry Dock in Strathcarron, Wester Ross, during the construction of the 48MW Kincardine floating wind farm.
The agreement with KOWL, a joint venture between Pilot Offshore Renewables and Atkins, will see Kishorn Port used for the fabrication of the semi-spar substructures for the eight 6MW turbines, which will operate 15 kilometres off the coast of Kincardineshire.
Up to 200 new jobs are expected to be created at the site, one of the largest dry docks in Western Europe, which was last used in 1994.
The exclusivity agreement between Kishorn Port Ltd and KOWL means work will start at the site in August, with the first turbine of the 48MW array expected to be in the water in the second quarter of 2018.
“This is a significant development for the people of Kishorn and will directly lead to the creation of up to 200 much-needed jobs in the area,” director of the Kincardine project, Carlos Barat, said.
“We are proud that we are able to support local business as we progress towards bringing this important development forward. Today’s agreement to use Kishorn dry-dock will herald a new era for offshore renewables and, of course, for this area as the terrific potential this facility offers the country is realised.”
Kishorn Dry Dock recently underwent a GBP 450,000 upgrade, with more than a third of funding provided by the Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE). The dry dock is currently being pumped out.
“As outlined in our new draft Energy Strategy, both fixed and floating offshore wind technologies are set to take an increasingly important role in the generation of renewable electricity,” Scotland’s Minister for Business, Innovation and Energy Paul Wheelhouse, who attended the contract signing ceremony, said.
”With 25% of Europe’s offshore wind potential, and through development with due regard to our natural environment, Scotland is strongly positioned to maximise the economic and environmental benefits that both technologies can deliver. The Scottish Government is determined to ensure projects deliver supply chain jobs in communities across Scotland and we have been encouraging developers to do all they can to maximise their economic impact, so today’s agreement is very welcome.”
The Scottish government granted a planning consent for the project in March 2017.