ScottishPower has won the rights to develop plans for its first fixed offshore windfarm in Scottish waters as part of Crown Estate Scotland’s ScotWind Leasing.

The MachairWind project off the coast of Islay, which could deliver 2GW of cleaner renewable energy,  will make a significant contribution to tackling climate change and achieving Net Zero, with the potential to generate enough clean electricity to power over 2 million homes in Scotland.

It will also build on ScottishPower’s long-standing presence and positive track record of investing in and working with local communities and businesses across Argyll & Bute to realise the benefits of renewable energy developments.


Keith Anderson, CEO of ScottishPower, said: “ScottishPower has been working with people, communities and businesses across Argyll & Bute for more than 20 years now as we’ve built our onshore wind portfolio. So, it’s really exciting to be expanding into offshore wind in a region where we’re known as a responsible developer and a good neighbour."

“Offshore wind is set to become the backbone of the UK’s energy mix and will do the heavy lifting as we ramp up the production of clean electricity on the journey to Net Zero. MachairWind will play an important part in that and make the best use of the region’s fantastic natural resources to help power the UK’s transition from fossil fuels to renewables and a better future, quicker. It will also help deliver investment, support jobs and boost supply chains – opening up immense opportunities for businesses and institutions across the region and the country – who can register their interest on our online portal now.”

George Dean, Director, Islay Energy Trust Ltd, said: “The development of a major offshore wind farm to the north-west of Islay opens up the prospect to deliver significant benefits to the islands of Islay, Jura and Colonsay. Our electricity supply has been constrained and subject to occasional undersea cable failures, and we are over-reliant on the importation of fossil fuels. With this project, we can seek opportunities to decarbonise our islands. Having worked closely with ScottishPower in the past, we are both very familiar with what it takes to engage with the community, and ensure an open and positive relationship.”

Leader of Argyll and Bute Council, Councillor Robin Currie said: “This has the potential to bring significant benefits to Argyll and Bute, as well as more widely across Scotland.  It could increase by 200% the amount of clean energy we produce in Argyll and Bute, and make a major contribution to getting Scotland and Argyll and Bute to net zero.  It creates opportunities for a substantial number of temporary and permanent jobs across Argyll and Bute, helping our economy recover and grow sustainably.  It also has the potential to position Argyll and Bute as a place where new industries such as data centres can access a ready supply of renewable energy. We look forward to working with ScottishPower Renewables as this project moves forward.”

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