France’s EDF buys mega wind farm off Fife coast

France’s EDF Group said it bought the controversial 450 megawatt Neart na Gaoithe offshore wind farm off the coast of Fife.

EDF said the total investment required to deliver the project is around £1.8 billion and that the project will be open to other investors in due course.

EDF said that via EDF Renewables in the UK, a joint subsidiary of EDF Energy and EDF Energies Nouvelles, it bought Neart na Gaoithe from global wind and solar developer Mainstream Renewable Power “following a competitive bidding process.”

EDF added: “The wind farm will generate up to 450 megawatts (MW) of renewable energy, which is equivalent to the annual electricity provision of around 375,000 homes.

“It is a fully consented offshore wind project which is located in the Firth of Forth off the east coast of Scotland.

“It covers 105km squared, and has a 15 year Contract for Difference at 140 Euros (corresponding to the indexation of the tariff of £114.39 that was set in 2012 prices), and grid connection agreements in place.

“This project also benefits from a wind regime among the best in the world.

“The total investment required to deliver the project is around £1.8 billion.

“The commissioning of the wind farm is planned for 2023.

“In line with the group’s usual practice, the project will be open to other investors in due course.”

EDF Energy CEO Simone Rossi said: “This is evidence of our continuing investment and growth in Scotland, where we are the largest generator of low carbon energy.

“Our operations contribute £389 million to the Scottish economy every year and we employ more than 2,800 staff and contractors.

“We supply 144,000 customers in Scotland.”

Mainstream Renewable Power CEO Andy Kinsella said: “We are very pleased to be bringing in such an established partner and supporter of the Scottish energy industry in EDF Renewables to this vital infrastructure project for Scotland.

“The completion of this sale adds to Mainstream’s global track record as the leading independent developer of some of the most significant and complex wind and solar projects across Europe, South America, Africa and Asia.

“The Neart na Gaoithe offshore wind farm has been fully developed by Mainstream and we are delighted to be handing over this world-class project.”

EDF Energies Nouvelles’ Group CEO Bruno Bensasson said: “This large-scale new offshore project demonstrates our strong ambition in being a leading global player in the offshore wind industry.

“It confirms EDF Group’s wider commitment to renewables in countries where EDF already has a strong footprint such as the United Kingdom.

“The project is consistent with the CAP 2030 strategy that aims at doubling EDF’s renewable energy generation by 2030.”