Local education and training schemes boosted by opening of new wind farm.

EDF Energy Renewables has officially opened its Burnhead wind farm, west of Avonbridge, near Falkirk. 

The 13 turbine wind farm has a generating capacity of 26MW - enough low carbon electricity to supply the average annual needs of around 14,500 homes.

The formal opening of the development was marked by confirmation that important financial support will be provided to a range of local community initiatives and education and training programmes over the lifetime of the project that could extend to 20 years.

Working with Foundation Scotland and the local Community Councils, EDF Energy Renewables has set up the new Burnhead Moss Community Fund. The fund will provide £130,000 annually over the lifetime of the wind farm which will rise in line with inflation.  Organisations and community groups in Avonbridge and Standburn, Limerigg, and Slamannan and Blackridge can apply to the fund for grants. 

The community fund also includes a special Education and Training Fund to support a range of education, training or re-training opportunities primarily linked to the renewables and energy sector.  Already two modern apprentices have been recruited locally as part of EDF EN Services UK Ltd who provide the operations and maintenance on a number of the company’s wind farms.

Matthieu Hue, Chief Executive of EDF Energy Renewables, said: “In continuing our development programme to bring new renewable energy assets on stream in Scotland we are proud to be a strong partner for the local economy and we are delighted to extend our support to local communities.

“The special education and training fund established for the Burnhead site is specifically designed to meet local needs and we will be working closely with local colleges to ensure it serves this purpose.”

EDF Energy Renewables operates five wind farm sites in Scotland with a combined generating capacity of 250MW, supplying the annual needs of around 145,000 households.*

In addition, the company also has around 250 MW of new schemes currently under construction that will nearly double its current generation capacity in the country. 

Nick Bradford, Head of Asset Management, EDF Energy Renewables said: “Burnhead is another important building block in EDF Energy Renewables’ contribution to the UK’s and Scotland’s low carbon economy which we are expanding all the time. 

“We have been working closely with Foundation Scotland and local community representatives in the area to ensure that the new funds will make a real difference to the local area and we are delighted with the progress made so far.”