National Grid has this morning announced the first wave of projects which have been successful through the UK Government's "Contract for Difference" (CfD) scheme of support for large-scale renewables projects. The previous ROC scheme will be phased out completely from 2018, with the"Contract for Difference" being the only way Government support can be obtained for larger schemes across all renewable technologies.
Awards have gone to several Scottish onshore wind schemes:
- Dorenell wind farm, by Dufftown, Caithness;
- Kype Muir wind farm, by Strathaven, South Lanarkshire;
- Middle Muir wind farm, South Lanarkshire;
- Tom nan Clach wind farm, Nairnshire;
- Solwaybank wind farm, by Langholm;
- Sneddon Law community wind farm, in East Ayrshire;
- Coire na Cloiche wind farm, in Easter Ross;
- Bad á Cheò wind farm, by Achkeepster, Caithness;
- Tralorg wind farm, by Girvan, South Ayrshire; and
- Achlachan wind farm, near Spittal, Caithness.
Significantly, the Neart na Gaoithe offshore wind farm, to be situated in waters off the Fife coast, has also been granted an award. Plans for offshore schemes in the Moray Firth have not been successful this time round.
The CfD scheme is based upon developers entering into a sealed-bid reverse auction process, bidding blind against one another for the level of strike price – the amount per megawatt hour received by the developer from the Government in respect of the energy generated from the renewable source. This process is the first time an auction process has been used to allocate subsidy payments in this way, introducing an element of"developer risk" into the process.
While these awards do not confirm that the successful projects will go ahead, but are a significant step toward the eventual implementation of the schemes. The next round of CfD allocations based on a similar auction process will take place later in the year.
We would be pleased to provide more information on the CfD process or on individual schemes on request.