Leading law firm Harper Macleod, working alongside English law firm Osborne Clarke, has advised Foresight Energy Infrastructure Partners as part of an acquisition of a renewable energy project with the potential to power nearly 300,000 homes.
Harper Macleod and Osborne Clarke advised Foresight Energy Infrastructure Partners, Foresight Group’s flagship energy transition fund, on the property and planning aspects of its acquisition of the project rights for a co-located pumped storage hydro plant and wind farm.
The project is located at a disused opencast coal mine near Kirkconnel, Dumfries and Galloway, which has the potential to power more than 289,000 homes every year.
Pumped storage hydro will provide a vital grid support service and contribute towards managing network constraints and balancing the grid, amid growing energy security concerns. It will also help to alleviate the reliance on fossil fuels as Scotland targets net zero by 2045 and the UK by 2050.
The pumped storage hydro plant will have a 1,600 MWh storage capacity which can be delivered at a rate of 210 MW per hour, providing eight hours of storage capacity. Utilising two 105 MW reversible hydro-turbines, the site will store power during periods of excess energy supply and release stored energy at times of peak demand. The co-located 33.6 MW wind farm will have the ability, via a direct connection, to power the PSH plant.
Richard Thompson, Partner at Foresight, said: “Long Duration Energy Storage has a critical role to play in the UK helping to reduce power prices for bill payers, enhancing security of supply and accelerating the road to net zero by enabling the integration of more renewables on the system.
“Foresight is delighted to be making its first Long Duration Energy Storage investment in a project that will create such a long-lasting environmental legacy through the repurposing of a disused coal mine.”
Harper Macleod’s team comprised Lewis Hendry (Property), Peter Ferguson (Planning) and Stephen Chan (Corporate). Osborne Clarke’s team included Matthew Bodfield, Alex Underwood, Andrew Carter and Ben Parker (Corporate) and Simon Hobday and Shraiya Thapa (Grid) and Helena Zaba (Tax).
“Long Duration Energy Storage has a critical role to play in the UK helping to reduce power prices for bill payers, enhancing security of supply and accelerating the road to net zero by enabling the integration of more renewables on the system.”
The work by Harper Macleod follows the firm’s advice to Foresight Group in its acquisition of the project rights for a 49.9MW battery storage project in Nairn, supporting English law firm Osborne Clarke.