The developers behind a controversial £230 million offshore wind farm, which tycoon Donald Trump claims will spoil views from his golf resort, are proposing to make some turbines even taller.
The European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre (EOWDC) has submitted new plans that would result in up to 11.5ft added to the furthest offshore of the 11 turbines in the North Sea.
Mr Trump has been embroiled in a bitter row with the Scottish Government, claiming the proposal will blight his £750m golf development at Balmedie, north of Aberdeen, which opened last month. However, the latest move is likely to further delay a decision.
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Mr Trump has described the turbines as monstrosities and ordered work to stop on his project until ministers throw out the plans.
The new plans mean there will be a further round of consultation. But the consortium behind EOWD, which will be a site for developers to test their offshore technologies, said yesterday it had signed working agreements with six potential suppliers.
As a result, the partners behind EOWDC – Vattenfall, Technip and Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group – say they have reviewed their project proposals in order to ensure Scotland does not miss out on the opportunity to lead the world in the development of offshore wind technology.
In a statement yesterday they said that, to accommodate the very latest turbine models, they had now submitted proposals to adjust the maximum height of turbines by up to 11ft, an increase of less than 2%, to 651ft and increase the radius of the turbine blades by up to 36ft, an increase of up to 15%.
However, it was also proposed to carefully design the site by reducing the maximum tip height of the front-row turbines from 639ft to 592ft, a decrease of more than 7%, and place the larger turbines in the seaward rows. Turbine locations have not changed from the original submission.
Iain Todd, project spokesman for EOWDC, said: "When we started talking to potential turbine manufacturers around 12 months ago more than a dozen international suppliers expressed an interest in deploying off Aberdeen. Recent discussions have led to six working agreements being signed.
"In keeping with the demonstrator concept, we decided to make minor adjustments to the project dimensions to accommodate the tallest of these turbines in the event that we procure them. We are confident that our careful design results in a barely perceptible increase in visual and environmental effects."
Mr Todd added: "We believe the proposed adjustment gives the scheme, Aberdeen city and shire, and Scotland the best possible chance to be genuine world leaders in offshore wind.
"It would help to attract a new wave of inward investment in plant and facilities and capture the major jobs creation that will come with this. Cities like Bremerhaven in Germany and Esbjerg in Denmark are already taking advantage and prospering from the growth in this expanding industry. So should Aberdeen."
A Scottish Government spokesman confirmed an addendum to the original EOWDC had been submitted by the developer to Marine Scotland.
Mr Trump vowed to continue his fight against the development.
He said: "Our position has not changed and we intend to fight this application and defeat these horrendous proposals that will ultimately destroy Scotland.
"As the many accolades about my course in Scotland continue to accumulate, the battle against these abominations has become even more urgent.
"We will do whatever is necessary to permanently end what has become the irrational obsession of a failing Government that has lost all credibility because it has no viable economic game plan for its future other than wind turbines.
"Our golf course in Aberdeenshire is now fully open to rave reviews throughout the world – perhaps the best reviews ever received for a new golf course. We look forward to continuing with the hotel and other components of the project but can't do so until these ugly monstrosities no longer threaten the natural beauty of the coastline."