On Friday 27th April 2018, Scottish Ministers refused consent for our planned wind farm at Caplich.
A copy of the Decision Notice is available here.
Our response to the decision is available here.
- 20 Turbines at 3.4MW capactiy each
- Total Generating Capacity = 68MW
- Height to blade tip = Up to 132m
- Rotor diameter = 104m
- Hub Height = 80m
Muirhall Energy submitted an application for consent to build a wind farm at Caplich, 5km North of Oykel Bridge. It was hoped that the wind farm will be developed in partnership with local community groups who could hold a share ownership of up to 10% of the wind farm company. The proposed development site was approximately 10km from Rosehall, 20km from Lairg and 25km from Ullapool. The site was been chosen due to its setting within a natural basin which partially screens views from neighbouring settlements and much of the surrounding area. There are no homes within 2km and visibility modelling demonstrates that the wind farm would not be visible to any neighbouring towns or villages.
An Environmental Impact Assessment was been undertaken and follows the advice provided through the scoping process. The wind farm layout was 20 turbines, each with a generating capacity of 3.4MW and a blade tip height of 132m.
It was anticipated that approximately £81 million will be spent within the Scottish economy to realise this project at the currently proposed scale, £5 million of which will be spent directly within the local area through local contractors and suppliers.
There was a substantial community benefit package of £5,000 per megawatt installed equating to an annual payment of £340,000. In addition to this, a Recreational Enhancement Fund of £34,000 per year will be available for the improvement of tourism and visitor amenities and the employment of local labour in the Assynt-Coigach National Scenic Area.
Public Exhibitions were held in June 2014 and the feedback which we’ve been given by the community as a whole has informed the design of the wind farm in the following ways:
- We handed over control of the wind farm layout to our landscape architects who have redesigned improved the wind farm layout, reducing turbine numbers from 23 to 20 and relocating turbines which has resulted in swathes of land which have reduced visibility and areas to the north east which will no longer have any visibility of the development,
- We have added a Recreational Enhancement Fund for the improvement of tourism and visitor amenities and the employment of local labour. It is envisaged that local labour may be used for to maintain and improve visitor amenities, such as walking trails, bothies, signage and potentially websites to promote tourism within the Assynt-Coigach National Scenic Area, and
- We have allocated £20,000 from our development budget to a fuel poverty programme within the five community council areas closest to the development. The fuel poverty programme was opened in October 2014 and ran until March 2015 and comprised of a contribution towards the cost of logs as wood fuel or match funding towards the cost of home insulation materials.