蘇格蘭第一部長薩爾蒙德（Alex Salmond）在格拉斯哥（Glasgow）舉行的世界再生能源會議（World Renewable Energy Congress）宣佈新的風力發電場計畫，他表示這座在蘇格蘭南阿納克（South Lanarkshire）阿賓頓（Abington）附近、具有152個渦輪的克萊德風力發電場（Clyde windfarm），將是使蘇格蘭邁向歐洲綠色能源城市的另一步。
克萊德風力發電場計畫將送交安粹風能公司（Airtricity）執行，這是蘇格蘭與南方能（Scottish and Southern Energy，SSE）公司自2008年二月併購安粹風能後另一項投資計畫。
Europe's largest onshore windfarm, able to generate enough power for 320,000 homes, has been approved by the Scottish government.
Announcing the new windfarm approval ahead of the World Renewable Energy Congress in Glasgow, First Minister Alex Salmond said the 152-turbine Clyde windfarm near Abington in South Lanarkshire is "another step towards making Scotland the green energy capital of Europe."
"The Clyde windfarm will represent a very important step in the development of renewable energy in Scotland and in meeting shared European targets," Salmand said on Monday. Clyde will be built in two phases, with commissioning of the first phase set for 2010 and completion of both phases scheduled for 2011. The Scottish government has set a target of supplying a third of Scotland's electricity demand from renewable sources by 2011 and half by 2020, said Salmond.
The Clyde windfarm application was submitted by Airtricity. It became part of Scottish and Southern Energy's development portfolio when the company acquired Airtricity in February 2008.
The development is expected to require an investment of US$1.195 billion. Scottish and Southern Energy, SSE, estimates that half of the total investment will be placed with Scottish companies.
The windfarm will be built in clusters of turbines on either side of the M74 motorway in southern Scotland. Clyde will have a total capacity of up to 548 megawatts of power, more than double the biggest windfarm currently operating in Europe - the Maranchon windfarm in Guadalajara, Spain, which has a generating capacity of 208 megawatts.
Whitelee, on Eaglesham Moor, south of Glasgow, will consist of 140 wind turbines with a total capacity of 322 megawatts once it is completed next summer. It is expected to produce enough power for over 180,000 homes, more than two percent of the Scotland's annual electricity needs, and will hold the title of largest windfarm in Europe until Clyde is completed in 2011.
"Clyde is clearly going to be a major project, with significant economic opportunities for the local community," said SSE's Marchant. During construction, the Clyde project is expected to create 200 jobs, with some 30 staffers employed when the windfarm is fully operational, he said.
Current installed renewables capacity in Scotland totals 2,800 megawatts, while installed nuclear generating capacity is 2,090 megawatts.
"Installed renewables capacity is already greater than nuclear capacity. But this announcement demonstrates that we are only at the start of the renewables revolution in Scotland," the first minister said.
Approval of the Clyde windfarm means that the total installed capacity of renewable power plants either built or consented and under construction will be 4.55 gigawatts - just 450 megawatts short of the five gigawatts needed to reach the Scottish government's interim target of generating 31 percent of Scotland's electricity demand from renewable sources by 2011.