The GFG Alliance has announced plans for a 178MW wind farm to be developed by related company Simec Energy. The 54-turbine £170 million investment at Glenshero in the Highlands will provide power for industrial schemes such as the GFG Alliance’s aluminium smelter and planned Fort William alloy wheels factory and its steel mills in Lanarkshire.
A key element of the Glenshero plan is that the steel for the required wind-tower structures could be rolled at Liberty’s Dalzell plant in Motherwell and possibly fabricated at a potential new neighbouring wind tower manufacturing facility.
GFG will also be seeking to bring the local community into the project with opportunities both for shared-ownership and discounted energy costs for local residents.
GFG is also discussing proposals with local groups, including enhancement of the existing hydro power stations and examining scope for several further small-scale hydro plants around Lochaber and Kinlochleven. Part community ownership is one of the options up for discussion for projects, such as Glenshero, and the small-scale hydro schemes. There may be other community benefits such as discounts on energy bills for residents living in the vicinity of the proposed windfarm at Glenshero.
Jay Hambro, chief investment officer for the GFG Alliance and chief executive of Simec Energy commented: “Glenshero is a unique project in our portfolio. It would be built in an environment of zero subsidies, using steel rolled and finished in Scotland and then generate clean energy to support the Scottish metals industry. It is also an exciting opportunity for us to work with the local community and encourage their investment alongside our own. This is truly a win-win project for all parties.”