United Kingdom – Crown Estate Scotland has confirmed all 17 successful ScotWind applicants now have option agreements in place, allowing their projects to progress to the development stage.
It comes after the announcement in January of the applicants who were chosen from among 74 applicants in a highly competitive process.
Full seabed leases are granted after applicants obtain the necessary regulatory approvals, such as from Marine Scotland, as well as grid connections and financing.
ScotWind’s main goal is to encourage supply chain investment in Scotland’s projects. Crown Estate Scotland required applicants to outline supply chain commitments as part of their application for an option agreement, a world first, with commitments being updated as project specifics such as timing and technology become clearer. Crown Estate Scotland will publish summaries of all initial commitments in the coming weeks, indicating an average investment of £1 billion per gigawatt of capacity built in Scotland.
This is only the beginning of the lengthy process that these projects will undergo as they progress through the planning, permitting, and financing stages. Crown Estate Scotland is not responsible for the next steps, and projects will only move forward to a full seabed lease once all of the planning stages have been completed.
ScotWind also has a Clearing process, which allows applicants who met the minimum requirements but were outbid for their preferred location to resubmit their application for a different location. The deadline for Clearing applications will be announced soon, and any option agreements that result will be signed later in 2022.