Whirlwind Renewables

Customer: Whirlwind Renewables
Location: Caithness, Scotland
Technology: Wind
Commissioned: 2019 
Installed capacity: 10MW wind 

Although independent developer Whirlwind Renewables has been involved in a number of onshore wind farms over the past decade, its Achlachan project is the biggest it has taken forward entirely by itself.

The 10MW project in the far north of Scotland was one of only a handful of onshore wind energy projects to have secured support through the UK Government’s Contract for Difference subsidy scheme for renewable energy generation.

The five turbine project - 17 miles from John O’Groats - is scheduled to be commissioned in early January 2019. Once construction is completed at the site at Watten in Caithness, the Senvion MM92 turbines will provide enough power for more than 8,500 homes and make a valuable contribution towards Scotland and the UK’s renewable energy targets.

Achlachan was one of 15 onshore wind projects to secure a Contract for Difference in 2015 before changes to the rules meant they could no longer compete for subsidies through the scheme which guarantees developers a price for the electricity produced.

SmartestEnergy was awarded the contract for the FiT CfD PPA following a competitive tender.

Thomas Chappell, a Director at Yorkshire-based Whirlwind Renewables which has so far received consent for more than 40MW of wind energy projects, said: “SmartestEnergy offered us very competitive commercial terms but we were also impressed by the way the team helped smooth the way to help us achieve financial close.

“You have to work to fairly tight timelines to get everything in place to finalise these agreements and the SmartestEnergy team was on hand throughout the process.”

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