After reading this https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/dozens-scottish-power-wind-turbines-29135763 I would like to know how many wind farms use diesel generators as back-up and how many do not?
I don't need to know how long or often the generators are used, just the amount of wind farms that use them.
As the information you have requested is ‘environmental information’ for the purposes of the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs), we are required to deal with your request under those Regulations. We are applying the exemption at section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), so that we do not also have to deal with your request under FOISA.
This exemption is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption, because there is no public interest in dealing with the same request under two different regimes. This is essentially a technical point and has no material effect on the outcome of your request.
The rules and regulations that govern the resilience of the GB electricity grid are a matter entirely reserved to the UK Government and the Scottish Government has no responsibility in relation to the operational management of wind farm sites.
Scottish Ministers are responsible for approving applications to build, operate or modify onshore electricity generating stations with capacities exceeding 50 megawatts under section 36 of the Electricity Act 1989. Applications concerning onshore electricity generating stations with capacities of 50 megawatts or less are approved by the local planning authority.
Energy consent applications and decisions are published and searchable on the Energy Consents website. Local planning authority applications and decisions are published and searchable on the local planning authority website.
While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the Scottish Government does not have the information you have requested. Therefore, we are refusing your request under the exception at regulation 10(4)(a) of the EIRs. The reasons why that exception applies are explained in the Annex to this letter.
The Scottish Government does not specifically gather information on whether wind farms use diesel generators as back-up.
However, we are aware there may be instances where diesel generators are referenced in the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report submitted by applicants. All EIA reports submitted to the Scottish Government are available publicly on the Energy Consents website. For example, we are aware that Whitelee Windfarm does have permission to use diesel generators located on the Ardochrig site as back-up. Details pertaining to the consent can be found on the Scottish Government Energy Consents Unit website – Scottish Government - Energy Consents Unit - Application Details
We are also aware from recent official level engagement with Scottish Power Renewables that Arecleoch and Glen App wind farms use diesel generators as a back-up.
The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.
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Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000
The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
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