Neart na Gaoithe gets O&M base approval

In: Windfarms

Scottish Borders Council’s (SBC) planning committee has approved plans jointly submitted by
Neart na Gaoithe (NnG) Offshore Wind Limited and Eyemouth Harbour Trust for an Operations and Maintenance (O&M) building for the offshore wind farm in Eyemouth.

NnG is jointly owned by EDF Renewables and ESB, and the approval sees Eyemouth Harbour move a step closer to housing the project’s O&M base. The planning permission is for a new three-storey 1,040 square metre main building and a two-storey 538 square metre storage warehouse.

The O&M building, designed by Corstorphine and Wright Architects, will house the office, warehousing and staff welfare facilities required to support the servicing of NnG once the wind farm is operational.

NNG stated that the investment in Eyemouth will bring an economic boost to the area, providing up to 50 permanent jobs over the project's 25-year life span. Additional benefits would see training, retraining and apprenticeship opportunities available to the residents of Eyemouth and the surrounding area.

Matthias Haag, NnG Project Director, said: “Having worked so closely with the Eyemouth Harbour Trust on the details of this proposal I am very pleased that Scottish Borders Council has approved the plans for our O&M base at Eyemouth Harbour.

“We need an O&M base for the 25-year lifespan of NnG which brings with it fantastic socio-economic benefits for the town of Eyemouth and the local community. Today’s announcement is a significant next step towards NnG’s O&M facility being based in the town.”

Christine Bell, Eyemouth Harbour Trust Business Manager, said: “Today’s decision by SBC is warmly welcomed by Eyemouth Harbour Trust. We have been working closely with the NnG project team to achieve this goal.  It’s another positive and significant step towards regeneration opportunities being realised in Eyemouth.”

The 450 MW
Neart na Gaoithe is owned by EDF Renewables and ESB. Once fully operational, it is expected to generate electricity for around 375,000 homes, or all domestic properties in a city the size of Edinburgh, and to displace 400,000 tons of CO2 annually. It was awarded a CfD by LCCC in February 2015, with a strike price of £114.39/MWh. The first commercial supply of electricity is expected by 2023.

Onshore construction continues for NnG at various locations along the cable route which runs underground from Thorntonloch beach and up into the Lammermuir Hills. Offshore work started in August with seabed preparations carried out in advance of the pile casings being installed.

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