LONDON Oct 23 SSE and Fluor
applied to the Scottish government to build and operate the
first phase of their planned 3.5 gigawatt (GW) Firth of Forth
offshore wind farm, one of the biggest being planned in Britain.
Scotland-based utility SSE and U.S. engineering company
Fluor said on Tuesday they sought consent for two wind farm
areas, with a capacity of 525 megawatts each, which represent
the first of three phases in the project.
The joint venture, which operates under the name of Seagreen
Wind Energy, is one of nine partnerships planning Britain's
biggest offshore wind farms.
"This is an important milestone for the Seagreen consortium
in developing the Firth of Forth Zone, Scotland's largest
renewable energy project," said Richard Escott, head of offshore
development at SSE Renewables.
Phases 2 and 3 will add another five wind farm areas to the
project of around 2.6 GW and construction is expected to start
in 2016 and 2018 for each phase respectively, if consents are
Guaranteed government subsidies for renewable energy
production have encouraged developers to come forward with
project proposals which the government hopes will help it meet
legally-binding carbon reduction targets.
Britain has to generate 15 percent of its energy demand from
renewable sources by 2020 and around 30 GW of offshore wind
capacity is expected to produce green power by then, compared
with around 2.4 GW available now.