Green energy firms Infinergy and Boralex have welcomed the Scottish Government’s decision to grant approval of their 21-turbine wind farm at Limekiln, south of Reay in Caithness. The wind farm has a grid connection contract in place for 90 MW.

Esbjorn Wilmar, Managing Director of Infinergy said: “We are delighted that the Scottish Government has given consent to Limekiln Wind Farm. We always knew that the site was an excellent one, and would ultimately prove its credentials, which includes being sited outside a Wild Land Area, through the planning process.”

“The Limekiln Wind Farm is our first project in Scotland, and we are delighted to be making our first step in diversifying our portfolio across Europe,” said Patrick Lemaire, Boralex’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “We believe this project will contribute to reduce carbon emissions to help meet the Scottish Government’s ambitious electricity generation targets and also provide significant investment and economic benefits to the local area as well as helping address the very real climate emergency we all face. We look forward to taking this project forwards toward the next steps of financing, construction and operation.”

In order to optimize the financing of this project, Infinergy and Boralex are exploring signing corporate power purchase agreements (PPA).

Located 2.8km South/Southwest of Dounreay Power Station, the proposal consists of 21 turbines and has a grid connection contract in place for 90 MW. Infinergy and Boralex will use the coming months to determine the most suitable turbine for this location, making use of the latest progress in wind turbine technology. Full construction works are envisaged to start in 2021 and we expect the site to be fully operational before the end of 2022. The wind farm will provide sufficient electricity to meet the needs of at least 39,500 homes based on the average generation mix of UK power sources.

Limekiln Wind Farm comes with a community benefit fund of £5000 per MW of installed capacity, equating to at least £315,000 per year or nearly £8 million over the lifetime of the development (based on 3 MW turbines). In addition, up to 10% of the project will be made available to the local community as a shared ownership opportunity, giving the potential to increase the economic value of the wind farm across Caithness.

Infinergy and Boralex announced the execution of a 50-50 joint venture agreement in October 2017, aimed at developing a pipeline of onshore wind projects, including the Limekiln Wind Farm project, essentially located in Scotland for a total estimated capacity of 325 MW.