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Wind farm project near Banff hits milestone

By Kyle Ritchie

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Moray Offshore Windfarm East has announced that the first offshore export cable has successfully made landfall at Inverboyndie.

To minimise environmental impact, the cable was pulled through an underground duct which runs from a point on the shoreline between Inverboyndie and Whitehills, below the coast and the sea bed, and out to a point in the sea 1km from the coastline.

The cable was pulled from the NKT cable laying ship, Victoria, through the duct by a winch on the shore.

The first offshore export cable from the Moray Offshore Windfarm East project has made land at Inverboyndie.
The first offshore export cable from the Moray Offshore Windfarm East project has made land at Inverboyndie.

The cable will be one of three which will take power from the offshore wind farm via underground cable to a new electricity substation on the national electricity transmission grid near New Deer.

The wind farm will provide enough low carbon power for more than 950,000 homes.

The installation of the offshore export cables, which connect the offshore wind farm to the shore, is being undertaken by firm NKT.

Moray East project director Marcel Sunier said: “This is another significant milestone for the project and I would like to congratulate all those who have made it happen safely, despite the challenging conditions we are all working under at the moment.

“Because it is underground and under the sea bed, the export cable is an unseen part of the project; but no less vital for that.

“When our works are complete at Inverboyndie, visitors to the area will have no idea of the advanced engineering hidden below the ground which is bringing literally millions of watts of low-cost, low carbon power to homes and businesses across the land.”

NKT were contracted to undertake works including the manufacture of approximately 185km of offshore export cables and their installation by the NKT Victoria cable-laying vessel and burial.

Project manager Tommy Sturesson for Moray East at NKT said: “After several years of collaboration between NKT and Moray East we have finally reached this major milestone of installing the export cables.

“NKT is honoured to be part of this major infrastructure project and we are very much looking forward to this next phase of the project, connecting the Scottish public to the well-known winds in a modern fashion by also gaining electricity from it.”

The 950MW wind farm is being developed by Moray Offshore Windfarm East, which is a joint venture company owned by Diamond Green Limited, Ocean Winds and CTG.

In September 2017, Moray Offshore Windfarm East was awarded a 15-year Contract for Difference (CfD) by the UK’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy for the delivery of 950MW of offshore wind generation.

The wind farm is expected to be operational by 2022.

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