Located on land belonging to Nisthouse Farm and Ludenhill Farm, the Nisthill Wind Farm proposal is for the erection of up to four wind turbines and associated infrastructure. The site is located approximately 5 kilometres (3.11 miles) to the east of Birsay. At this early stage, turbine tip heights of up to 180 metres (590 feet) are currently being considered.
If the project receives approval, Nisthill Wind Farm would make a critical contribution to the total megawatts required for the islands-to-mainland electrical interconnector to go-ahead (more information here: https://www.ssen-transmission.co.uk/projects/orkney/) and furthermore to Scotland’s ambitious net zero targets (more information here: https://www.gov.scot/policies/climate-change/).
Who is behind this wind farm?
For the last few years, Paul Archibald of Nisthill Farm and Adrian Breck of Ludenhill Farm have investigated the possibility of a wind farm on their land. Initially their aim was to self-fund and develop themselves.
Although they have succeeded in taking the key initial steps, it became apparent that with the large sums required and risks involved an experienced third party was required. Infinergy was delighted to be approached by Adrian and Paul and have since joined up together in partnership to support and develop Nisthill Wind Farm. More information on Infinergy can be found at www.infinergy.co.uk .
Combining Infinergy’s extensive experience in developing renewable energy schemes and the equally extensive local knowledge of two Orcadian farmers, means we are now confident that a suitable proposal can be developed for the site.
Why tip heights of 180 metres (590 feet)?
There are a number of reasons why a higher tip height is required on this site. Firstly, the taller the wind turbine, the more wind it is able to capture. As a result far more green electricity is generated, maximising the site’s capacity. Furthermore, wind turbine manufacturers are continuously improving turbine technology and addressing the specific needs of other countries globally. Elsewhere in the world, it has become commonplace for 200 m (656 feet) and higher turbines to be erected. In response turbine manufactures are following this global market trend and removing the smaller turbine models (<150 m) from their production line. By choosing a 180 m turbine model we are ensuring the scheme , if permitted, can be developed without delay.
The first step in the wind farm’s application is the scoping process. The Nisthill Wind Farm scoping report was submitted to Orkney Islands Council on the 2nd March 2022. Responses to this scoping report from key consultees (local and national) will help define the required environmental studies needed to then complete the Environmental Impact Assessment Report (EIA Report), which will be submitted along with the planning application. This full planning application is expected to be submitted in summer 2022.
Should Nisthill Wind Farm be granted permission, it is currently anticipated that site construction or erection of turbines would commence no earlier than 2024.