Moray West, an offshore wind farm planned in the outer Moray Firth, has selected Buckie harbour in Moray, Scotland, as its long-term Operations & Maintenance (O&M) base.
The base will be the onshore hub from which the offshore facilities are run through its operational life.
The base will include a new building to house offices, changing rooms, drying room and warehousing, with a nearby secure external compound, together with a new pontoon and upgraded quayside facilities.
Moray Council, as the owner of the harbour, will lease part of the quayside and land for the facility.
The wind farm’s operation and maintenance activities will be carried out using crew transfer vessels (CTVs) which will transport technicians and engineers between the harbour and the wind farm.
In addition, the harbour will be used to support the construction phase of the wind farm.
With a date for first power in 2024, the wind farm project is expecting to support close to 60 staff at Buckie, with further asset management support from the existing Edinburgh office.
Moray West has planning consent and grid connection, and awaits award of a Contract for Difference (CfD) for which it is preparing to compete at the next auction, set by the UK government, to allow the project to proceed to construction.
”The decision by Ocean Winds to select Buckie as the O&M base for Moray West was made after an extensive technical and commercial assessment,” Project Director for Moray West, Adam Morrison said.
”The existing facilities and supply chain in Buckie made it ideal for a strategy that will rely on the smaller CTVs. We look forward to working with Moray Council, the supply chain and other stakeholders to make the most of this opportunity to create long term sustainable employment in the town and across Moray, while delivering a major step towards national decarbonisation targets. Although the outdated transmission charging regime unfairly penalises projects in the north of the UK we continue to advocate for reform as part of our efforts to take Moray West forward. Subject to investment decision we hope to move rapidly into construction in 2022 and deliver the full range of project benefits in Moray, Scotland and the rest of the UK.”