THE First Minister has marked the connection of the UK’s tallest and most efficient onshore wind turbines to the national grid.

The 200-metre structures are part of Banks Renewables’s Kype Muir Extension Wind Farm in South Lanarkshire that will consist of 15 new ultra-efficient turbines.

Lying just south of Strathaven, South Lanarkshire, Kype Muir Extension’s turbines will help to provide around 53,700 households with green electricity annually over its 30-year lifetime.

This is the equivalent of taking 23,550 petrol cars off the road every year.

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During her visit to the site, Nicola Sturgeon unveiled a plaque as well as having the opportunity to discuss the future of renewable energy with members of the Banks Renewables team.

She said: “Onshore wind is the biggest source of renewable energy in Scotland, making it a vital part of our mission to become a net zero economy by 2045.

“In addition to being a cheap and reliable source of electricity that harnesses one of our most abundant resources, onshore wind can help us meet that target in a way that benefits communities – through the creation of high-quality jobs, and investment in local businesses and supply chains – as part of a just transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy.

“The damaging impacts of the climate emergency recently highlighted at COP27 and the spike in energy prices since the war in Ukraine demonstrate the importance of accelerating that transition.

“Kype Muri extension is a significant example of that in action, and the Scottish Government will shortly outline how we plan to boost the country’s onshore capacity by up to 12 gigawatts by 2030.”

The National: The FM visited the Kype Muir Extension on WednesdayThe FM visited the Kype Muir Extension on Wednesday (Image: Newsquest)

The South Lanarkshire wind farm is an extension of Banks Renewables’s 26-turbine Kype Muir Wind Farm site.

The extension will feature four 156m, three 176m and eight 200m-tall wind turbines.

Scottish civil engineering firm RJ McLeod (Contractors) Ltd which was originally appointed by Banks to construct the first Kype Muir wind farm has also been appointed as the contractor for the extension site.

The adjacent Kype Muir wind farm and the new extension will have a combined capacity 155.4MW which will generate enough electricity for around 124,000 households each year.

Banks Renewables’s existing Kype Muir site was chosen as the location for the launch of the Scottish Government’s Onshore Wind Policy consultation just last year and was praised by the Cabinet Secretary for Net Zero, Energy and Transport, Michael Matheson MSP, for its positive impact on the surrounding South Lanarkshire community.

Andrew Liddell, development director at Banks Renewables said: “To welcome the First Minister to the site and have her mark such a major milestone for Scotland’s renewable energy sector is an incredible privilege and proud moment for everyone involved in the project.

“Kype Muir Extension and its impressive turbines are an excellent example of a project that can make a real and positive impact towards the Scottish Government’s ambitious net-zero targets.

“Not only does the wind farm have the tallest and most efficient turbines on UK land, but it will also play a key role in providing the surrounding community with major benefits – something that is high on our agenda.

"Over its 30-year lifetime, there is no doubt that Kype Muir Extension will prove valuable in many different ways for South Lanarkshire and Scotland as a whole.”