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Council / Councillors to debate Scatsta lease

Meanwhile Statkraft confirms an interest in building a ‘greener grid park’ at Scatsta

Scatsta airport closed in June 2020 when the oil flight business move to Sumburgh. Photo: Shetland News

COUNCILLORS will meet behind closed doors on Tuesday afternoon to discuss a proposal to lease SIC-owned land at Scatsta for a major energy project.

The item was first due to be debated at last week’s meeting of the full council but was held over for a special one item meeting of the SIC tomorrow.

It comes as voices get louder in warning that Shetland is in danger of not fully capitalising on the opportunities emerging from the energy transition.

Last week, local energy consultancy and project development company Voar told Shetland News that the isles were at a crucial moment in their history, and if decision makers were not careful all the profit from the new industries would disappear through the “sooth mooth”.

And the SIC itself used some unusually harsh language recently when responding to a government consultation, saying that the energy transition was “too important to be hijacked for corporate shareholder gain”.

Meanwhile, Norwegian state-owned energy giant Statkraft, one of the companies with an interest in the lease, said it was committed to the isles.

It confirmed to Shetland News that it is interested in the idea of building a ‘greener grid park’ at Scatsta.

It is already proposing greener grid park in Lerwick, which would provide back-up battery storage to keep power flowing in Shetland if the planned subsea transmission link connecting the isles to the national grid has an outage.

It would kick into life to allow Lerwick Power Station time to transition out of standby mode.

Statkraft is behind plans to build a large wind farm in Yell, has just bought two consented wind energy projects – one in Yell, the other outside Lerwick – from Peel Energy.

A Statkraft spokesperson said: “Shetland has a proud history of leading the way in green energy innovation, and Statkraft is committed to the isles, with plans to open an office there later this year.

“We are currently investigating the potential for further projects in Shetland, which could include a Greener Grid Park at Scatsta. These plans are at a very early stage, and we will be able to share further information in due course.”

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