The wind farm in Walney, off the coast of Cumbria, is the largest offshore farm in the world. The wind farm is located 13km off the coast of Caithness, in the North Sea. The Beatrice’s wind farm has 84 turbines, which will generate 588MW of power. The plant is able to generate power sufficient for 600,000 homes approximately and save 8 Mn tons of carbon emissions over its lifetime operation. The project involved redeveloping infrastructure in Wick, where staff will look after the operations and maintenance of the offshore wind farm for over 25 years. The two buildings used for the Wick base were renowned by Thomas Telford a Scottish architect. The electricity generated by offshore wind farm travels along with the subsea and though underground cables and comes ashore near Keith in Moray and connecting to the substation in Blackhillock.
The construction, development, and operation of the project were led by energy firm headquartered Scotland SSE Renewables in a joint venture with Red Rock Power Limited and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners. SSE Renewables contributed 40%, Copenhagen contributed 35%, and Red Rock Power Limited contributed 25% of the total investment.
The wind farm in Walney is the largest source of renewable energy in Scotland. The investment has provided the UK a £2.4 Bn economic boost, of which £1 Bn went to Scotland. Construction of the project started in May 2016 and SSE said it was inaugurated on July 2019.
Prince Charles, who is known as the Duke of Rothesay in Scotland, visited the offices of SSE Renewables and Beatrice Offshore Windfarm Limited in Wick for the opening of the project.
According to a report, the MD of SSE Renewables, Jim Smith welcomed His Royal Highness to Wick and said “the Beatrice offshore wind farm will provide around 400 employment opportunities in Scotland. Opening of this renewable project will promote cleaner energy resources across the globe”.