In 2016 conditions changed, allowing the project to move forward. Consents are now in place and allow for:
- up to 85 wind turbines;
- associated substructures and seabed foundations;
- inter-array cables;
- two offshore substation platforms;
- offshore export cable circuits.
The Moray West offshore export cable circuits will come ashore on the Aberdeenshire coast, approximately 50km south of the Moray West site. The cabling will then run for 30km – taking the generated power to the onshore substation and then on to the National Grid interconnection point at the Blackhillock substation outside Keith.
About the development process
Moray West secured all the necessary paperwork (planning permissions, marine consent, grid connection agreement, supply chain plan and lease from Crown Estate Scotland) to ensure the project was eligible for the 2019 Allocation Round 3 of the UK Government’s CfD auction. Unfortunately, the project did not secure a CfD contract, although the project sponsors, ENGIE and EDPR, have confirmed their support for the project and readiness to continue investing in the development of engineering and commercial solutions.
Despite the setback, the project remains viable and there is confidence that Moray West will become an essential part of Scotland’s energy transition story. To develop the plan, Moray West Offshore Wind Farm will aim to secure either a government CfD at the next auction round, which is due in 2021, or identify an alternative route to market. Either method will allow us to finalize all commercial and contractual arrangements and the planned start of construction in 2022-23.
The Moray West Wind Farm project is due to be fully operational in 2024-25 and has a 25-year operational life.