The island community of North Uist in Scotland’s Outer Hebrides is set to build a community windfarm following a successful crowdfunding campaign.
The renewables project plans to build two turbines on the island near Clachan-na-Luib at a predicted cost of around £3.5m. While most of the financing is coming from commercial loans, the North Uist community needed to raise 10% of this (£350,000) in equity. The project’s organiser, UistWind, announced in a tweet on Christmas Eve that it had even exceeded its target, saying:
“A happy Christmas indeed! We’re so delighted to announce we’ve raised over £408,000 towards our community project. Huge thanks to our supporters!”
Construction is now set to begin soon and be completed by July 2019, thanks to planning permission already having been granted. UistWind is also already licensed to sell electricity to the National Grid, which will be exported to the mainland through the current cable.
Scotland is generally favourable for on-shore wind power, especially when using modern turbines and advanced lubricants like Mobil SHC Gear 320 WT from Mobil UK distributors. The project is anticipated to raise some £105,000 per year, give or take. Over the project’s 22-year lifespan, this could amount to over £2m, which will be fed back into the community through the charitable activities of the North Uist Development Company. Investors in the project will also benefit from a targeted 4% interest rate on their investments and have a say in how profits are spent in the community.