Plan spinning into action

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An Arbroath firm has been taking extra steps to keep in with the neighbours as they submit an application for a medium-sized turbine.

Bairds Malt, Elliot Industrial Estate, has submitted an application to Angus Council for a turbine which will supply a third of their energy needs and help secure the future of the plant.

The build is being carried out by Kilmac Construction and the proposed single turbine would be situated on the south-west corner of the site, with a height of 55m to its hub and 77m to tip, and partially screened by the existing buildings.

Noise monitoring indicates that there would be no additional noise pollution from the turbine due to the current noise created from the maltings, which operates 24/7.

The installed capacity of the turbine would be 900kW, which would produce in the region of 2.3GWh per year, the equivalent of the annual energy usage of around 500 homes.

A turbine was first mooted in Summer 2013 with the firm carrying out public consultations with residents and taking onboard their concerns about the visual and noise impacts.

Kilmac group director Derek Ross explained: “Some of the residents were wondering what it would look like from their gardens so we re-ran all of that. The biggest thing was reducing the noise.

“We could have gone for a bigger turbine but we’ve gone for one that fits the industrial context.”

Dr Richard Broadbent, Bairds Malt commercial and technical director said: “Angus has been very good to us as a company, especially as it is home to some of the finest quality cereal farms in the UK. We have invested in the Bairds Malt facility over the years, with the plant upgraded in 1980 and again in 2010 - making it one of the most modern malting plants in Scotland.

“The plant operates 24/7 and the high energy demands of the plant means that we must look at ways to reduce our energy costs. The savings the turbine could bring would help us secure the future of the facility and safeguard the local jobs that the facility provides.”

Plant manager and nearby neighbour Neil Chapman added: “I’ve worked at Bairds Malt for 21 years and, as well as the income it provides for me and my family, the plant brings a lot of investment to our community. Anything that guarantees the long-term future of the Plant and local jobs should be supported and that’s why I’d like to see the Bairds Malt turbine get given the go ahead.”

With the application now submitted it will be registered either this week or next and advertised soon thereafter.