West Benhar Wind Energy Project

Partnerships for Renewables is working with the Forestry Commission in Scotland to explore the potential for siting wind turbines in the West Benhar plantation.

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West Benhar application submitted

Published: 06/08/2013

Partnerships for Renewables has submitted a planning application to North Lanarkshire Council for a wind energy development in the West Benhar Forest near Shotts. This 27.2 MW application has been submitted through its partnership with Forestry Commission Scotland (FCS) and follows over extensive environmental and technical study of the site.

Alan Mathewson, Regional Manager at Partnerships for Renewables, said:

“We believe that this site, on the public national forest estate, is appropriate and will benefit, not only the public purse, but also local people through the provision of a leading benefits package. This 8 turbine proposal will have the capacity to generate almost 67 GWh of green electricity per annum – enough to power over 15,000 homes*.”

If the planning application is successful then a market leading community benefit fund will be available, offering £5,000 per installed megawatt which could provide in excess of £3 million for the local area over the life of the development. Local communities will also be given the opportunity to invest directly in the project and consultation with local communities will continue throughout the planning process to establish the best way of delivering a long term benefits.

FCS signed an agreement with Partnerships for Renewables at the beginning of 2010 to look at all the potential Forestry Commission Scotland sites in both the Lowlands and Scottish Borders districts. Having identified over a dozen sites through the initial screening process, the hope is to deliver around 250 MW of installed capacity between the two districts with community investment opportunities for the sites being granted planning permission.

FCS is keen to ensure that any development will allow them to increase resources and enhance facilities across the forest estate.

The planning application can be viewed on the North Lanarkshire Council planning portal with an application reference number 13/01377/FUL.

Hard copies of the application will also be on display in the following locations:

North Lanarkshire Council   Harthill Community Education Centre        Shotts Library

Planning Services                    Main Street                                                        Benhar Road  

Fleming House                         Harthill                                                               Shotts 

2 Tryst Road                              ML7 5QE                                                            ML7 5EN


G67 1JW                                                                     



 * Please note that the environmental benefit figures are based upon fifteen 3.4 MW turbines with a total installed capacity of 27.2 MW, operating with a 28 % capacity factor, average household electricity use of 4,266 kWh per annum, and the electricity generated displacing electricity generated from CCGT/average fuel mix – approximately 430g CO2/kWh.


Craig Mullen, Partnerships for Renewables, 0131 338 6995

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