A SIGNIFICANT onshore wind farm development that would provide clean electricity to meet the needs of around 21,000 homes each year has been given the green-light by South Lanarkshire Council.
Banks Renewables’ planning application to build some of the UK’s most effective onshore wind turbines at Mill Rig Wind Farm, near Darvel in East Ayrshire, has now been rubber-stamped and is on course to become operational within three years.
Straddling the South Lanarkshire and East Ayrshire border, Mill Rig will play host to six powerful wind turbines with an installed generation capacity of around 36MW – enough to meet the electricity needs of all the households in a town around the size of East Kilbride.
In addition to the generation of vital clean, green electricity, Banks Renewables’ new £40million project will displace over 18,000 tonnes of CO2 annually from the UK’s electricity supply grid, the equivalent of removing almost 7,000 petrol cars from the road.
Robin Winstanley, sustainability and external affairs manager at Banks Renewables, said: “To gain planning permission is a major milestone for Mill Rig. The development will bring many social, environmental and community benefits to the local area and we’re delighted South Lanarkshire Council has approved these exciting plans.”
The Hamilton-based renewables company has consulted with the community throughout the planning process and will set up a local community fund which is expected to create up to £180,000 revenue annually – translating into £5.4m over the expected thirty-year lifetime of the project.
The economy in the local area will benefit from local contracts worth £11.7 million during construction, with business rates of £18 million expected to be injected into public coffers, in addition to supporting many jobs over the lifetime of the development.
Robin added: “By working closely with the surrounding community, this project will help Scotland generate much needed clean, green electricity as well as providing local people and groups with funding to support the growth of important initiatives that benefit the communities close to Mill Rig Wind Farm.”
“With the next steps of detailed design and construction, Mill Rig Wind Farm is on track to help Scotland achieve its ambitious net zero targets, bolstering the UK’s energy security by producing green electricity by 2025.”
This project will be the latest for Banks Renewables, following on from the approval secured for the Lethans Wind Farm in 2020 and the grid connection of the Kype Muir Wind Farm three years earlier.
Mill Rig will become Banks’ fourth operational Scottish development once construction is completed.
For more information on Banks Renewables, visit: https://www.banksgroup.co.uk/renewables/