An Investigation into the Potential Barriers Facing the Development of Offshore Wind Energy in Scotland: Case Study - Firth of Forth Offshore Wind Farm

Aoife O'Keeffe, Claire Haggett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The Scottish Executive has set ambitious targets of achieving 100% of electricity from renewable sources by 2020. As Scotland has the best offshore wind resources in Europe, the development of this energy source is crucial for reaching these targets. However, the development of offshore wind raises a number of issues related to economic viability, grid connection and public acceptability. This paper investigates these areas in greater depth, using a case study of the Firth of Forth offshore wind farm, in order to determine if these barriers can be overcome in time to make a valuable contribution to 2020 targets. Through interviews with relevant stakeholders, it emerged that there are various obstacles which are impeding progress in offshore wind development in Scotland. It became evident that stakeholder opposition, an inadequate renewable energy support mechanism, and the insufficient grid infrastructure off the Scottish coast are posing barriers, and hindering development. It became apparent that in order to overcome these barriers, a number of changes need to take place. A more inclusive approach to stakeholder engagement is required, which facilitates the sharing of knowledge. In order to improve the economic viability of offshore wind in Scotland, adopting a new mechanism which reduces risk and provides developers and investors with more certainty, would be more effective in encouraging offshore wind development. Finally, in order to overcome the most significant barrier, the grid, a more integrated and collaborative approach is required, which will share the burden of responsibility between the developer, Ofgem, and the National Grid.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3711-3721
JournalRenewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews
Volume16
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'An Investigation into the Potential Barriers Facing the Development of Offshore Wind Energy in Scotland: Case Study - Firth of Forth Offshore Wind Farm'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this