Seagreen project kick starts Scotland’s green recovery
Updated: Jun 6, 2020
SSE Renewables has taken a final investment decision to proceed with the Seagreen 1 offshore wind farm. Located in Scottish waters in the Firth of Forth, at 1,075MW, Seagreen 1 will be Scotland’s largest wind farm once complete, generating enough electricity to power 1 million homes. Seagreen 1 will further the UK’s ambition to deliver 40GW of offshore wind by 2030 and make a significant contribution towards reaching Scotland’s and the UK’s net zero emissions targets.
The £3bn project will be taken forward together with a new joint venture partner, Total, with whom SSE Renewables has entered into an agreement to sell a 51% stake in Seagreen 1. SSE Renewables will continue to lead on the development and construction of the project, supported by Total, and will operate the asset on completion, which is expected in 2022/23.
SSE Renewables believes the UK can build a cleaner, more resilient economy by pursuing a green recovery from coronavirus. To achieve this will require unlocking investment in low-carbon infrastructure, creating jobs and building supply chains. The decision to green light £3bn of capital investment in Seagreen 1 will deliver in all three of these areas.
Seagreen will provide an economic boost to Scotland and the wider UK with hundreds of local jobs created during the construction phase and throughout its operational life. Today, SSE Renewables has confirmed it has completed and signed a contract with MHI Vestas Offshore Wind to provide the 10MW turbines, with blades to be manufactured in the Isle of Wight and service operations based in Scotland. Additionally, Seaway 7 will create up to 50 jobs at its Aberdeen office as a result of being awarded the contract to install the turbine foundations and inter-array cables for Seagreen.
This builds on Seagreen’s existing commitments to maximising local content, with Aberdeen-based Petrofac building the onshore and offshore substations and Montrose Port chosen as home to the operations and maintenance base for the 25-year life of the offshore wind farm.
Jim Smith, Managing Director of SSE Renewables, said: “Following the agreement with Total we are looking forward to delivering the Seagreen offshore wind farm which will contribute towards building a cleaner, more resilient economy as we pursue a green recovery from coronavirus by unlocking £3bn of low carbon investment, creating green jobs and generating the zero-carbon power we need to reach net zero.”
The UK’s Minister for Energy and Clean Growth Kwasi Kwarteng said: “Seagreen 1 will create hundreds of jobs while powering millions of homes and helping to cut CO2 emissions, highlighting the key role offshore wind will play in our journey to a net-zero carbon emissions UK economy.
“The UK has invested more in offshore wind than any other country, is home to the world’s largest wind farms, and already supplies 10% of UK electricity demand - a figure we expect to double by the middle of the decade.”
In September 2019, SSE Renewables secured a 15-year Contract for Difference (CfD) in the UK Government’s auction for low carbon power for around 40% of the project’s capacity. Another c. 30% will be contracted with the SSE Group, which is well positioned to optimise the route to market for this renewable output, including through developing opportunities to meet its customers’ growing demand for long-term fixed price green power.
SSE Renewables continues to develop its wholly owned Seagreen 2 and 3 projects (combined up to 3,200MW), which were awarded exclusive development rights by The Crown Estate in 2010. It has also started onshore construction on the world’s largest offshore wind farm, Dogger Bank Wind Farm, which it is delivering together with its partner, Equinor.