E.ON's largest onshore wind farm gains planning consent

E.ON has received planning consent for its Camster wind farm in Caithness. It has received final approval from the Highland Council after a four-year planning process.

A planning application and associated Environmental Statement was submitted to the Highland Council in December 2004.

The site will have 25 turbines and be capable of producing up to 50MW, or enough power for up to 35,000 homes, based on UK average annual consumption 4725 kWh per home.

According to the company, the proposed development lies outside any areas designated by statutory bodies for their ecological, geological or landscape value. The turbine layout has been designed to minimise potential visual impact while remaining technically feasible and capable of satisfying constraints from various interests.

The Camster site is very windy and is located in the most remote part of Caithness. It lies away from the main centres of population and scenic coastal areas, being 10km north of Lybster, 6km south of Watten and 6km west of Tannach, the three nearest sizeable communities.

Simon Eddleston, development manager for E.ON's UK onshore wind projects, said: "This is excellent news for us and for Scotland, especially considering how long the project's been in planning. This is a major development for us and it's clearly a key development for the UK's renewable targets as it will displace around 72,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide a year (based on the Government's long term marginal plant figure of 430g CO2/kWh and a forecast project annual energy yield determined from on site wind monitoring)."