ScottishPower has been granted final planning consent for Europe's largest on-shore windfarm, the 322MW Whitelee project south of Glasgow. It will provide enough green energy to power 200,000 homes, roughly equivalent to the city's demand, the company says.

The GBP300 million, 140 turbine project approved on Thursday April 27 by the Scottish Executive, will cover square kilometers of open moor land and commercial forestry, and makes a significant contribution to Scotland’s renewable energy target for 2010.

ScottishPower’s CEO Philip Bowman said: This project is of national importance as we have always maintained that large windfarms, in appropriate locations, are vital to meeting the UK’s ambitious renewable energy targets.

The successful development of Whitelee highlights the importance of clarity and consistency from the government in the operation of its renewables obligation (RO). It is vital that the integrity of the RO policy and its implementation remains intact, otherwise investment confidence will be damaged and the UK’s renewables’ target threatened, he added.

Construction at the site will start this summer, with the first turbines arriving in late 2007 and the first units becoming operational in 2008. The whole windfarm, including a visitor center, is expected to be completed by the summer of 2009.