Work begins in Scotland on Europe’’s biggest wind farm

After a five year-battle for planning approval, developers have started work on Europe's biggest onshore wind farm - a 140-turbine creation at the heart of Scotland's drive to become the "Saudi Arabia" of renewable energy.

The 140 turbines of the £300m Whitelee wind farm, which will be built in moorland and forest near East Kilbride, south of Glasgow, will provide enough electricity to power 200,000 homes. Though the prospect of generating 322 megawatts of energy – enough to power all of Glasgow – has seen off concerns about environmental impact, supporters of onshore wind energy in the UK admit that a project of its ilk may never secure planning permission again.

Whitelee will supply one-eighth of the capacity needed to meet the Scottish Executive’s ambitious target of generating 40% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2020. The station’s developer, Scottish Power, estimates that it will also prevent the emission of 650,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide a year.

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