EDF launches consultation on 400MW onshore wind farm in Scottish Borders
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EDF Renewables UK is seeking responses to a consultation on building a major 400MW onshore wind farm in the Scottish Borders.
Liddesdale wind farm will be located within Wauchope Forest and Newcastleton Forest and could consist of up to 80 wind turbines, with a battery storage system and solar development on the site.
The site is expected to power up to 231,000 homes.
EDF has said it will deliver a community benefit fund of £5,000 per megawatt of installed capacity annually to local communities.
Residents have been invited to meet the project team and discuss the proposals while it is still in the initial stages of development.
Government policies over the last decade have hampered the roll-out of onshore wind power in the UK. In 2016, David Cameron instituted an effective ban on the infrastructure after pressure from Conservative MPs, who worried about the impact of wind turbine damage on rural communities.
But according to research from the Energy and Climate Change Intelligence Unit, the ban may have added close to a billion pounds to energy bills last winter as oil prices surged in the wake of the Ukraine war.
In December, the government U-turned on the ban and launched a consultation looking at how new onshore wind facilities could begin construction again as long as there is sufficient support from the local community.
EDF Renewables already submitted a scoping report to Scottish ministers through the Energy Consents Unit in late June.
Andrew Bennett, development project manager at EDF Renewables UK, said: “With detailed environmental studies having been underway on site for a number of months, we are pleased to present an early-stage proposal for Liddesdale wind farm to the local community.
“These exhibition events will provide information on our approach to the project, and how we intend to develop Liddesdale wind farm in step with local communities and the surrounding natural environment while enabling Scotland to meet its net zero targets to combat climate change.”
The wind farm will make a “significant contribution” to the Scottish government’s target to reach net zero emissions by 2045, he added.
In June, Labour Party leader Sir Keir Starmer pledged to “cut bills, create jobs and provide energy security” by removing planning barriers standing in the way of green initiatives.
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