A Scottish legal decision that quashed the permits for four major offshore windfarms, including one – Neart na Gaoithe (NNG) – that had a Contract for Difference (CfD), is an immense problem for wind, infrastructure in general and the Scottish Government, Matthew Knight, director of strategy and government affairs, GB & Ireland, at Siemens, told New Power.
Knight says: it was “a serious and credible project held up by a legal challenge that went on for a ridiculous amount of time.”
New Power asked whether he has particular concern that this judgement – which affected four projects totalling 2.3GW – could be made, and processed so slowly, in Scotland, which is driving renewables as a major industry.
He said: “It’s not just a jeopardy of ‘can I follow the process and get the consent’, but ‘how do I know that the process is even valid?’. People won’t spend tens of millions of pounds taking that risk.”
He said the message for the Scottish Government is: “You have to sort this out. At some point in the future somebody is going to be asked to resubmit or submit new applications to the Scottish Government for infrastructure projects. Each will have spent tens of millions of pounds [to get there].”
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