All 33 turbines are up and turning, exporting ‘green’electricity to the National Grid while generating a £4.5 million community benefit fund for the local area (pictured).
With a total generation capacity of 67.65 MW, the first electricity was exported to the grid in June and it has the potential to generate enough electricity to power around 64,000 homes each year*.
Rod Crawford, SSE project manager, said: “This is one of a number of projects that we have worked on with civil contractor RJ McLeod and turbine contractor Senvion over the years and with each project we learn more and reap the benefits from this collaborative approach in terms of efficiency, safety, and quality.
“Importantly, the community has also played an important role in the way that we delivered this project. They gave us the opportunity to prove our commitment as a responsible developer and deliver the project in a way that minimised impacts, provided significant socio-economic benefits to the area, and developed a genuinely positive working relationship with the local community.”
The wind farm has so far delivered more than £3 million of contracts across the Sutherland and Caithness area, and a seven-figure contract was placed with the local Kirkton quarry in Melvich for the production and supply of concrete for the site.
Furthermore, almost £150,000 of smaller contracts have been awarded in the immediate area to local businesses or tradespeople, and over £70,000 has been delivered so far in the form of local spend on accommodation, food and fuel.
Janette MacKay, Chairman, Strathy and Armadale Community Council, said: “As a remote and fragile community on the north coast, this project has meant a great deal to us and has delivered everything that SSE promised.”