A new wind farm able to power up to tens of thousands of homes in the Highlands is set to give a multi-million boost to locals, according to the project developer.
German energy firm Innogy claim the new Bad a Cheo Wind Farm in Achkeepster near Caithness is capable of powering up to 22,000 households each year.
The project will also deliver more than £3.3 million for the region over the lifetime of the development.
Onshore wind developer Innogy confirmed yesterday that all 13 turbines are now exporting electricity to the grid.
Bad a Cheo is a 25 year operational project and has a generating capacity of 26.65 megawatt (MW).
Alex Meredith, Innogy’s head of Onshore Wind Development UK, said he was “delighted” that the project had reached a “significant milestone”.
He added: “Not only is Bad a Cheo Wind Farm a significant addition to Innogy Scotland’s renewables portfolio, as the cheapest form of green technology to consumers, new onshore wind has a crucial role to play in Scotland’s clean energy future.
“Innogy Scotland looks forward to working with the Scottish Government and communities across Scotland to help reach net zero carbon by 2045 as we work together to address the climate emergency at the lowest cost.”
Developers of the new wind project also announced that Bad a Cheo would provide £3.3m in community benefit fund for the local area.
An initial cash installment of £133,250 is now available and will be generated each year of the operational lifespan of the project.
Katy Woodington, Innogy’s community investment manager, added: “We have spent a long time listening to what local people want, and with the agreement of Watten, Halkirk and District, and Lybster, Latheron and Clyth Community Councils we have appointed Foundation Scotland to administer the fund via their local officer Eilidh Coll.
“When surveyed, seventy-three percent of respondents to Innogy’s questionnaire about the fund supported a model where local people make decisions on the allocation of funds via a volunteer grants panel supported by an independent grant-making organisation.”