Renewable Connections is investigating the potential for a 25 MW solar energy farm by Kinglassie, Fife. Once operational, the project would supply enough power for 7,000 homes and make a valuable contribution towards tackling the climate emergency in Fife.
As we prepare an application to submit to Fife Council Renewable Connections is undertaking consultation to inform local communities of our proposed plans and invite any feedback. We will also be hosting virtual community information events to present our proposals and answer any questions given the COVID-19 pandemic.
We welcome any feedback you wish to provide so please do get in touch.
We hosted a virtual community consultation event on September 2nd 2021. Here is the link to the recording from the event.
We have now submitted the planning application to Fife Council, and it can be viewed at https://planning.fife.gov.uk/online/ using the planning application number 21/03531/FULL
Please see the proposed design here. Following on from the community consultation event we have decided to include battery storage as part of the planning application, this will be housed in containers at the centre of the site and are illustrated as the green boxes on the design. This technology will optimise the renewable solar energy output and therefore contribute more towards Scotland’s push towards net zero.
The addition of the battery storage will not significantly change the original proposal. The purpose of the battery storage is to store solar energy generated on the site when it is not needed and to discharge it into the grid when it is. The battery storage element has been assessed alongside the solar element and we do not anticipate any change in anticipated environmental effect.
11,000 tonnes of CO2 saved annually
24,753 megawatt hours supplied each year
Equivalent annual energy needs of 7,000 homes
47 hectares of land enhanced for native wildlife
The site proposed for Strathruddie Solar Farm comprises agricultural land located to the west of Kinglassie, Fife.
Our plans are still in the development stages, so our design proposals will evolve as we gather local input and the results of our environmental assessments.
If installed the solar farm will have a capacity of up to 25 MWp and will be operational for up to 40 years. After that time, all the installation will be removed and the land restored to how it was before, but with improved soil health and biodiversity. The power generated will be exported to the grid via a substation connecting to existing powerlines which run through the site boundary. No new pylons will be necessary to facilitate the connection.
The solar panels will be installed in rows which run east to west through the site. These rows will be tilted towards the south to capture the maximum amount of solar irradiation possible. The total height of the panels will be no more than 2.8m above the ground with a gap of more than 0.8m above the ground at its minimum.
Small electric cabins will be located amongst the panels and these will be accessed by a network of crushed stone track which will run through the site. All of the panels will be surrounded by a deer fencing to protect the equipment from large animals entering the site. CCTV cameras will be located periodically around the site perimeter for security.
The development will also involve additional landscaping including hedgerow planting and improved biodiversity management. The site is currently pasture and arable land with low ecological value, however with the implementation of a Green Infrastructure Plan the site will be significantly enhanced for biodiversity by creating a range of new habitats, offering food and shelter to wildlife.
Following the UK Government’s declaration of an “Environment and Climate Emergency” in May 2019, the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) advised that to meet ‘Net Zero’ targets, the UK will require substantial amounts of new, low carbon power sources to be built before 2050, up to four times that of today’s levels. The Scottish Government have further set an ambitious target of net-zero emissions by 2045.
Fife Council declared their own climate emergency in September 2019 acknowledging that urgent action is required to limit the environmental impacts produced by the climate crisis.
Solar is one of the cleanest, lowest cost forms of energy available. Strathruddie Solar Farm would make a meaningful contribution to Fife’s energy needs by delivering green energy to over 7,000 homes annually. Over the lifetime of the project, it would save an estimated 440,000 tonnes of CO2 from being emitted.
This site has been identified following extensive site selection across Fife which took into account environmental designations, local electricity network access and capacity, the physical characteristics of the site, and a supportive landowner.
For a period of approximately 6 months during construction, there will be deliveries of equipment to site. Renewable Connections will put in place measures to manage impacts of construction traffic and these measures will be included in a Construction Traffic Management Plan that will submitted with the planning application. There will be infrequent maintenance visits to the site during operation.
Solar farms are temporary and the land will be fully reinstated to farmland once the equipment is removed at the end of the project life.
No – solar is a passive technology which doesn’t produce any harmful by-products.
The development proposes a life span of up to 40 years. No later than this, the development would be decommissioned, and the site returned to solely agricultural use. A decommissioning plan will be provided with the planning submission.
No – solar farms are not noisy, producing no more than normal background levels of sound similar to wind or distant traffic beyond the site boundary.
Renewable Connections is committed to maximising benefits for the Central Fife Community. The project will support local businesses, provide enhanced business rates, and provide enhancements to wildlife. We will also establish a Community Benefit Fund to share the profits from the electricity sales to support local causes.
141-145 Curtain Road,