January 19th 2022

A major milestone for Scotland to a transition away from fossil fuels, embrace green energy and aid decarbonisation was reached this week.

On Monday 17 January, Crown Estate Scotland announced the results of the first leasing of Scotland’s seabed which will be used for offshore wind projects.

The auction attracted more than 70 bids from major oil, utility and investment funds all bidding for developments on 15 locations and 17 projects were awarded covering 7,000km2 – these have a combined potential to generate capacity of 25GW through both fixed and floating structures

Scotland has 1.9GW of operational offshore wind and a further 8.4GW in construction or in advanced development.

Most of the sites which made up the auction are on the east, north east or northern coast, plus another on the western side of Scotland.

The ScotWind project is an incredible opportunity for Scotland to establish itself as a global leader in the generation of renewable energy. Early projections show that by the time these windfarms are constructed, approximately six million tonnes of CO2 will be prevented from entering our atmosphere every year.

It has been almost two years since Orkney Harbour Authority (OHA) launched the first phase of its Masterplan for the future.

Focused on supporting the offshore wind and renewable energy sectors, OHA has already been liaising with developers and colleagues at Orkney Islands Council on its plans.

Orkney is very well suited in terms of its geography to support offshore wind developments and the Masterplan – launched in July 2020 – covers five specific locations where development can take place in order to provide crucial infrastructure.

Paul Olvhoj, Business Development Manager at OHA, said: “Our Masterplan clearly shows how Orkney can support the whole life cycle of windfarm development from assembly, installation, marshalling, operations and maintenance through to decommissioning.

“This week’s announcement has meant we’ve been able to take a significant step closer to achieving our vision of a greener, more sustainable environment for Orkney.

“Since launching our Masterplan in 2020 we have worked closely with our council colleagues, Crown Estate Scotland and industry partners to lay the foundations for what will be a long term plan to support decarbonisation and a transition away from fossil fuels.

“Orkney Harbours is one of the most diverse and successful council-run port authorities in the UK and there are few harbours in Scotland offering deep water quayside facilities like those at Scapa Flow.

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