WIND turbine sections destined for a new wind farm in Aberdeenshire, that arrived into the new deep water berths of Montrose Port, have begun the final part of their journey.
The turbines arrived on board the Linde on Wednesday, January 23, and over the next four weeks will be transported by flat-bed lorry through Montrose and up the A92 to the site at Meikle Carewe Farm, four miles north west of Stonehaven.
The turbines arrived in the port having been ordered by Meikle Carewe project developer RES from Spanish manufacturer Gamesa.
With the creation of Montrose’s two new deep water berths on the south quay last year as part of a £10 million redevelopment, the port is now able to accommodate larger vessels.
Chief executive of Montrose Port Authority John Paterson said: “Every ship that comes in to the port is extra business, and we are very pleased to be able to handle the components for the wind farm industry.
“The deeper berths mean that we can accommodate significantly larger vessels in the port, not only those in the wind turbine industry but other commodities, such as sub-sea vessels and others involved with the oil and gas sector.
“We’re privileged to have such skilled personnel and operators working for us who have been able to handle these upward components so we look forward to welcoming more vessels to the port.”
RES had initially planned for the turbines to be shipped to Dundee, but it was discovered that Gamesa would also be delivering turbines to another wind farm at St John’s Hill near Kinneff, utilising Montrose Harbour as their berthing point.
Rachel Anderson, community relations manager for Meikle Carewe Wind Farm, said: “By working together with Gamesa, and the local authorities, the deliveries to both wind farms require only one route and the distance the turbines need to travel by road is reduced, thereby minimising the potential for any disruption for road users.”
Convoys of up to three flat-bed lorries will leave Montrose at 9.30am on weekday mornings accompanied by escort vehicles, with up to two further convoys following later in the day, depending on weather conditions.
Rachel added: “We had quite a bad first week with the snow but we are still on target with everything, with the wind farm expected to be generating electricity by March of this year.”
The turbines arrive into the port unassembled, with the blades, two tower sections, hubs and nacellas (the box-like structure at the top of the tower which houses the switchgear) being transported separately and then being assembled by crane at the site.
Aberdeenshire Councillor and Chair of the Infrastructure Service Committee Peter Argyle said: “I think the position in Aberdeenshire is that it is a very attractive place for wind turbine developments; we have lots of wind, plenty of land owners wishing to invest and good connections to the National Grid.”
The new site will eventually be home to 12 turbines, each of which will stand 70 metres high to the top of the blade. It is anticipated that the farm will generate enough electricity to meet the annual need of 7,000 households and will also trigger a Community Benefit Fund of £20,500 per year for the duration of the wind farm’s 25-year life, to be divided among groups and projects from within community councils in the vicinity of the farm.