Keith Anderson, the head of Scottish Power, has indicated the company’s interest for the UK’s renewable energy business and plans to invest around £6.3bn in renewable electricity generation. Keith has said the renewable business is performing very well and wants investment to be concentrated on boosting the company’s renewable energy generating capacity.
Scottish Power has also just given the go ahead to a £2.5bn investment in offshore wind off the East Anglian coast, with development costs for offshore wind falling from £160MWh to around £120MWh over the last three years. The Cost Reduction Monitoring Framework report, delivered by ORE Catapult on behalf of the Offshore Wind Programme Board, has provided strong evidence that the cost of energy from offshore wind continued to fall through 2015 and remains on track to deliver the target of £100/MWh by 2020.
The report also identifies forthcoming announcements on timing and scale of future Contracts for Difference (CfD) auctions and long term capacity requirements as key enablers of further cost reduction. It also shows that investment in turbine technology has delivered significant cost benefits, but that further reduction will need to come from the innovations in ‘balance of plant’, such as foundations, cables and substations.
The company will continue investing in onshore wind projects and are investing £300m in the Kilgallioch scheme in South Ayrshire, set to become one of the biggest onshore windfarms in the UK with their Whitelee wind farm near Glasgow being the largest onshore farm in the UK.
In an unrelated announcement recently, it is interesting to hear that energy firm Good Energy is planning to build an 11 turbine onshore wind farm, government subsidy free! This project in Cornwall could be funded solely from the income generated through income from its electricity; the company also plans to open the project up to investors from the local community which could make it the England’s largest community owned wind farm.