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Climate / Port of Sullom Voe could support delivery of offshore wind infrastructure, council says

The port of Sullom Voe has been pitched as possible support base for any future offshore wind development to the east of Shetland. Photo: Shetland News

SHETLAND Islands Council has submitted an expression of interest in support of the possible development of offshore wind to the East of the islands.

The matter was raised at a meeting of Shetland Islands Council’s (SIC) harbour board on Wednesday, with the port of Sullom Voe highlighted as a site which could prove useful.

A potential site in the water to the east of Shetland is one of many locations included in a Scottish Government plan for future offshore wind development.

Infrastructure director John Smith said the jetty berthing facilities at Sullom Voe could potentially offer the size needed for vessels carrying offshore wind equipment.

“The expression of interest is in there with the Scottish Government,” he said.

He said supporting offshore wind development was “one of the possibilities for the future that we are very much tracking and trying to be active on”.

North Mainland councillor Alastair Cooper said Lerwick Port Authority – which owns the deep-water quay at Dales Voe – is also looking to get involved in any offshore development.

Meanwhile councillors were told that the SIC is unlikely to receive any income from Shetland Gas Plant throughput any time soon.

The council only receives income from gas processed by the plant when its price is above a certain level.

However, the SIC is only on course to receive base annual rental income of around £600,000 from the gas plant due to the current gas price.

Following a question from councillor Davie Sandison, Smith admitted that the gas price needed to secure extra income for the SIC was “a long way” from what it is currently.

He said the possibility of renegotiation on the council’s gas plant deal was slim without the prospect of further gas fields being identified.