Crown Estate Scotland considers new offshore wind leasing
Crown Estate Scotland – the body that manages leasing of the seabed – is to start discussions with industry, government and interested organisations to prepare for potential new offshore wind leasing.
A range of agencies, NGOs and marine sectors will be involved in informing the approach to leasing, with a view to ensuring new projects can start to operate from the late 2020s and beyond.
Current offshore wind projects in waters around Scotland includes 211MW in operation (including Robin Rigg and Hywind Scotland) and 680MW in construction (including Beatrice). The proposed new leasing will potentially see more seabed used by developers to build commercial-scale (100MW+) floating and / or fixed offshore wind farms.
John Robertson, senior development manager at Crown Estate Scotland said: “We have now started to consider if and how to issue new leasing rights for commercial-scale offshore wind projects. This will include speaking to local, Scottish and UK stakeholders in 2018 to understand their views on our proposed approach.
“The waters around Scotland have fantastic potential, particularly for developments in deeper waters. With costs being lowered and jobs created throughout the supply chain, new leasing has the potential to benefit communities, consumers and the climate.”
Scottish energy minister, Paul Wheelhouse MSP, said: “Investment in renewable energy, such as offshore wind, will not only stimulate economic growth, but can also help to lower electricity prices in the future and significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions and, thereby, mitigate the impacts of climate change.
“We want to maximise the huge potential of this industry and its supply chain here, in Scotland, and so I welcome Crown Estate Scotland’s efforts to identify future licensing opportunities and look forward to working with CES as they manage Scotland’s marine assets directly on behalf of Scottish Ministers.”