Welton of Creuchies
Green Cat Renewables (GCR) first started work on this project in 2007. Problems during planning meant that it was only consented on appeal in 2012. Even after consent was granted the grid connection was prohibitively expensive, however another wind project was consented nearby and we were able to negotiate a joint grid connection and hence bring the price down to an affordable level.
Whilst the principal of the shared connection should have led to savings of ~£2M on the original quote, in practice the shared connection brought significant additional problems and costs. It was deemed necessary to seek a planning consent for the ICP works, this was relatively straightforward and was granted in 2015. However, an objector to the nearby project raised a Judicial Review action against the consent as a way of trying to prevent both projects proceeding. This action and the subsequent appeal delayed the projects for 18 months. The shared grid also caused issues with the finance as the lenders for both projects struggled to get comfortable with a situation where neither project was in overall control.
Working with the neighbouring project we were able to devise a mechanism whereby both projects deposited their share of the ICP moneys in an ESCROW account that was managed independently and with a control protocol that meant neither developer could detrimentally affect the other’s project. The lenders were comfortable with this arrangement.
The shared grid infrastructure had a side benefit that as neither project was a sole asset user, the DUoS charges were significantly reduced.