Swedish state-owned generator Vattenfall has committed to build its biggest UK onshore wind farm in the Scottish Borders.
South Kyle, five kilometres east of Dalmellington in Ayr, is now destined be a 240MW project, against 165MW planned earlier. That will make it some 10MW larger than Vattenfall’s 230MW Pen y Cymoedd wind farm in south Wales.
Subject to Covid-19 curbs on construction, the firm anticipates the farm will come on stream in spring 2023, twelve months later than planned.
Greencoat UK Wind has ended Vattenfall’s hunt for a finance partner for the project. Investing in nearly 1GW of operating UK wind farms, the financier will assume ownership of the farm on completion.
Two years ago the Swedes were touting PPAs as small as 1MW or 3GWh annually to underwrite the project. The government’s lifting last month of its ban on onshore wind competing in CfD auctions appears to have reduced the need for such work-arounds.
Vattenfall will manage South Kyle’s assets for ten years, including its 50 turbines with tips 149.5 metres high and has committed to buying the farm’s output, estimated in the region of 700GWh per annum, for fifteen years.
Vattenfall describes South Kyle as a consented site. Community benefit is highlighted in the South Kyle package, in the form of a £38m development investment promised to local groups.