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Energy / Wind developer looking to progress with plans for two more turbines at Luggie’s Knowe

The Luggie's Knowe turbine. Photo: Shetland News

MORE wind turbines could be built in the outer reaches of Lerwick as developer Shetland Aerogenerators looks into going ahead with a further two at its site near Dales Voe.

The company was granted permission in 2012 for three turbines at Luggie’s Knowe, and one was installed in 2015.

Shetland Aerogenerators is now looking to progress with the two other turbines.

However, the development of the Dales Voe decommissioning facility and a quarrying expansion has come into conflict with the location of one of the proposed turbines.

It is said to be no longer advisable for engineering reasons.

The developer is also keen to install larger turbines than initially proposed as the “economics of energy systems has progressed considerably since the original consent”.

The propeller section of the turbine is being lifted into position on Sunday - Photo: Austin Taylor
The existing turbine during construction in 2015. Photo: Austin Taylor

It is anticipated that two new turbines would have an installed capacity of around 5MW each and could be up to 149.9m in height to the blade tip. This is about five metres shorter than those which will be used in the Viking Energy wind farm.

The existing 3MW turbine at Luggie’s Knowe, which exports power to the local grid, has a tip height of 121m.

In a submission to Shetland Islands Council’s planning service, Shetland Aerogenerators said that “given the strong containment of the site within Dales Voe, other than potential localised significant effects, it is not considered that the proposed development will result in wide-ranging significant landscape or visual effects”.

Company director David Thomson said the wind developer, which also runs the Burradale wind farm outside of Lerwick, has submitted a screening request to the council relating to possible adjustments to the existing consent for turbines at Luggie’s Knowe.

“Screening is not a planning application and is a correspondence about what format and content any consent application would have if such an application is made,” he said.

“There have been ongoing infrastructure developments in the vicinity and changes in the wind turbine supply industry that suggest a review of the existing consents at this time is appropriate.”

Thomson said there are “no commitments or timescales” at this stage for the further two turbines at Luggie’s Knowe.

He added that “report after report […] establish that wind energy is the most affordable source of electricity”.

“The only way the country, and regions like Shetland in particular, are going to reduce fuel poverty and break our crippling dependency on fossil fuels is to transition to a net zero economy based on renewable energy,” Thomson said.

“Shetland Aerogenerators has always advocated that objective.”