Under the terms of the development agreement, signed by EDPR, SeaEnergy Renewables Ltd (SERL) (the 80% owned subsidiary of SeaEnergy) and The Crown Estate, the companies have been awarded the exclusive rights to develop offshore wind farm sites within the zone.

EDPR and SERL have formed Moray Offshore Renewables Ltd (MORL) to develop the zone and the agreement provides SERL with the right to retain a 25% working interest in MORL and all designated offshore wind farm developments within the zone, whilst EDPR holds a 75% interest.

The awards were announced following The Crown Estate’s Round 3 Offshore Wind application process, which aims to deliver 25 GW of offshore wind power installed capacity.

The zone is located on the Smith Bank in the Moray Firth off the northeast coast of Scotland and covers an area of 520.3km2. It is approximately 25 km southeast of the Caithness coast and has water depths of 30-60 m. The strategic environmental assessment, commissioned by DECC, has concluded that there is scope for the construction and operation of an additional 25 GW of offshore wind farms subject to certain restrictions on their location.

MORL will commence an extensive data gathering process within the offshore wind farm zone shortly which will include bird and mammal studies, recording of metocean information and wind source analysis within the Moray Firth. This process will take at least 24 months, ahead of planning consents which should be submitted in early 2013.