Crown Estate Scotland unveils plan to attract offshore wind projects
The Crown Estate Scotland has announced plans to lease seabed in the Scottish waters in a bid to attract new offshore wind projects.
The estate released a discussion document which aims to ensure that wind farms will continue to be developed from late 2020s onwards, and feels this scheme is a necessary move.
The public corporation has confirmed that any financing raised by wind farms in the seabed will go to the nation’s government, towards its public spending.
According to the BBC, leaders in the industry are suggesting the move will boost Scotland’s economy.
The country currently has two offshore wind farms in operation, the Robin Rigg Wind Farm and the world’s first floating wind farm, Hywind Scotland.
There are two wind farms currently under construction in Scottish waters – the Beatrice Wind Farm and the European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre – with construction to begin on several more soon.
“Using our seas to power Scotland is an important part of our economic and environmental well-being,” commented John Robertson, Senior Manager of Energy & Infrastructure at Crown Estate Scotland.
“To provide affordable, secure, and clean energy, Scotland must continue to sustainably use its natural resources and grow the offshore wind sector.”
“The potential benefits of offshore renewable energy to Scotland are enormous,” regarded Scotland’s Environment Secretary, Roseanna Cunningham.
“That is why it is important that Crown Estate Scotland makes available the right seabed locations at the right time, in order to contribute to delivery of our energy strategy, attract inward investment, develop new technology and continue to drive down the associated costs of offshore energy.”
Drax advances biomass strategy with Pinnacle acquisition
The Group’s enlarged supply chain will have access to 4.9 million tonnes of operational capacity from 2022. Of this total, 2.9 million tonnes are available for Drax’s self-supply requirements in 2022, which will rise to 3.4 million tonnes in 2027.
The £424 million acquisition of the Canadian biomass pellet producer supports Drax' ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) and will make a "significant contribution" in the UK cutting emissions by 78% by 2035 (click here).
This summer Drax will undertake maintenance on its CfD(2) biomass unit, including a high-pressure turbine upgrade to reduce maintenance costs and improve thermal efficiency, contributing to lower generation costs for Drax Power Station.
In March, Drax secured Capacity Market agreements for its hydro and pumped storage assets worth around £10 million for delivery October 2024-September 2025.
The limitations on BECCS are not technology but supply, with every gigatonne of CO2 stored per year requiring approximately 30-40 million hectares of BECCS feedstock, according to the Global CCS Institute. Nonetheless, BECCS should be seen as an essential complement to the required, wide-scale deployment of CCS to meet climate change targets, it concludes.