Build of £580m Viking Wind Farm reaches halfway point

THE halfway point has been reached in the construction of the £580 million Viking Wind Farm in Shetland.

Scheduled to be operational by autumn 2024, it will feature 103 turbines and be the most productive onshore wind farm in the UK.

The 52nd Vestas V117 turbine was recently installed at the site. Installations first got underway in February, with all tower base sections having been erected across site by mid-June.

Turbine components continue to be delivered from Lerwick Port under convoy operation and are expected to conclude later this month. All turbines are programmed for full erection in 2023, with Viking expected to be fully operational by the autumn of 2024, SSE Renewables said.

The build is a joint project between SSE Renewables, Vestas, and Shetland Islands Council, with RJ McLeod acting as main contractor.

Paul Nicolson, SSE Renewables’ head of onshore renewables development and construction for UK & Ireland, said, “The installation of the 52nd turbine near Scar Quilse off the A970 is an exciting milestone for the project. The progress reflects our strategy to lead the transition to a net zero future through the world-class development, construction and operation of renewable power assets.

“Reaching this point in the project is testament to everyone involved in the installation process. By the end of this year, we expect all of Viking’s turbines to be in place and once operational, in 2024, it will be capable of producing enough energy to power the equivalent of almost half a million homes including every home in Shetland, playing a crucial role in contributing towards the UK and Scotland’s net zero targets.”

Robert Yeates, lead project manager at Vestas, said, “We are very pleased to have reached the halfway mark of the construction programme. This significant milestone has been achieved with the continued close collaboration with our partner SSE Renewables, RJM the principal contractor on the Viking Energy Wind Farm, and our subcontractors.”