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Proposed Offshore Wind Turbine Construction Yard In Scotland

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posted on Aug, 11 2016 @ 12:30 PM
The Kishorn concrete oil platform construction yard gained planning permission through trickery. First a site was proposed at Drumbuie, close to where the rich people have their yachts. Obviously there was well connected opposition. The public inquiry dragged on while the lawyers had the hardship of staying in glorious highland surroundings.

I reported what was, in 1973, the longest-ever event of its kind in Scottish legal history – the Drumbuie inquiry into plans by a consortium of Mowlem and Taylor Woodrow to build concrete oil platforms at a site next to the tiny crofting village on the shores of Loch Carron.

The top legal brains in Scotland – who went on to become the Lords Ross, McCluskey and Clyde – sifted through the arguments in the unlikely setting of Balmacara Hotel.

While this epic was going on, another consortium – Howard Doris – nicked in the back door with an application for the much less controversial Kishorn site.

There was an almost palpable sigh of relief in Government circles as a compromise solution presented itself – approve Kishorn and reject Drumbuie, where the reluctant landlords were the National Trust for Scotland.

Geoffrey Jellicoe was chosen to design a yard with minimal impact on the landscape, then dropped as if it had all been a formality.

Now there is a proposal to extend the yard, increase quarrying, and mass produce offshore turbines, mooring them in flocks on the loch before delivery.

Kishorn lends itself to offshore wind manufacturing, assembly and fabrication, operations and maintenance and decommissioning. It also has the added feature of an on-site quarry for the supply of concreting aggregates if the concrete gravity base structures or concrete casings are required.

The local people will tell you depopulation has been a major problem for many generations, anything that offers employment locally is welcome.

Here's evidence of talented people leaving Kishorn.

MacRae left his home in Loch Kishorn in the West Highlands to begin a new life . . . by 1914 had set up his own underwear manufacturing firm . . . the swimming costumes that were starting to sell so well . . . quickly established itself as the ultimate swimwear for athletes and the public, earning MacRae the nickname 'The Speedo King'.

I'd rather see a Speedos factory than a turbine yard at Kishorn. At least we could be fairly sure the Speedos would eventually be decommissioned,

SCOTLAND should not become an oil rig “graveyard” because companies have reneged on pledges to restore the North Sea seabed once they are finished with it, according to one of the country’s leading oil economists.

Professor Alex Russell – chairman of the Oil Industry Finance Association, who is also chairing a working group on North Sea decommissioning – said the original plan was for oil companies to leave the seabed in the condition it was in before they started putting down their concrete and steel platforms.

“What we’re seeing in the Brent field is that plans have been put forward by Shell to simply remove the topsides and, in certain cases, leave the legs in situ with buoys to indicate the danger to shipping,” he said.

“That, to me, absolutely beggars belief. Scotland should not be used as a scrapyard for the remains of oil rigs.

“If we are giving tax concessions to oil companies for decommissioning, they should stick to the original plan, which was to restore the seabed back to its original condition.”

Which brings us to the eventual decommissioning of the turbines. It'll probably never happen. Once they've been towed out and sunk into position they'll stay there till they crumble.

posted on Aug, 11 2016 @ 01:10 PM
a reply to: Kester

I don't quite understand your point - are you bemoaning the oil, the mining of the oil, wind turbines, the fact it would provide employment, or something else?

Mentioning someone leaving the area and having set up a successful business in 1914 (yes, over a century ago?) is interesting but how is it relevant? people from all walks of life in towns up and down the UK leave their home town to make a go of something. Some do ok, some don't do as well as they hoped and some do amazingly inspirational things - maybe in a way they all do even if they didn't reach the goal they had set themselves. Still can't see your point though.

posted on Aug, 11 2016 @ 01:23 PM
I can remember when the joke was how many sheep did you kill on the way to work at Kishorn
it was like the whacky races getting to work there in the camps and the drinking was the stuff of legend no wonder they called them commandos back in the day .

posted on Aug, 11 2016 @ 01:46 PM
If i understand this correctly you would prefer Scotland would try and make up the shortfall from Westminsters austerity cuts and the Brexits estimated 5 billion loss by Re-opening a defunct swimwear company.??

For some reason i dont think a sudden world wide demand for tiny trunks is gonna save us.

posted on Aug, 11 2016 @ 04:36 PM
I found a article here about north sea decommisioning

Shell’s concrete-legged structures in the Brent field. “Our structures weigh 300,000 tonnes, the same as the Empire State Building,
edit on 11/8/2016 by stonerwilliam because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 11 2016 @ 05:41 PM
a reply to: uncommitted

The Kishorn Yard was created with trickery and broken promises.
The energy companies will almost certainly fail to remove the oil infrastructure, leaving an unenviable clean-up for future generations of taxpayers. We should be aware that the giant wind turbines will most likely be also left where they are placed. The need for accurate portrayal of the energy infrastructure is the biggest point I'd like to make.

Employment in the Highlands is a very big issue, and has been for many generations. Many in Britain leave their local area to find better prospects. In places such as Kishorn the perception is the young must leave to find any prospects at all. That's the difference. That's why any project offering employment in the local area is welcomed by locals.

posted on Aug, 11 2016 @ 06:15 PM
a reply to: stonerwilliam

I knew John Balgy who lost many sheep to the wacky races. He skinned dozens of them and nailed the skins to poles and posts along the road. He was one of the strongest men I ever met. He once asked myself and a friend to help get some timbers from the beach. My friend and I struggled up with a beam between us, then John strode past with an identical beam held under one arm.

One of the bridges was repaired after a hit during the wacky races. The next weekend the same wall was demolished again in another crash. Some of the bridges still show damage to this day.

It's something the locals will be debating as plans to re-energise the yard progress. Inevitably it will mean more high speed driving on narrow roads and heavy vehicles supplying the site.

posted on Aug, 11 2016 @ 06:28 PM
a reply to: Soloprotocol

Metaphorically, yes. If anything remained for archeologists to find we'd have indications of high quality clothing being produced in the Highlands and Islands for thousands of years. Some businesses may bring in many times the profit of others in the short term, but the long term cost of short term gain is something that cannot be ignored.

posted on Aug, 11 2016 @ 06:40 PM
a reply to: stonerwilliam

Great link.

Odd that . . .

Ospar’s measures are largely the result of a spat between Shell and Greenpeace after the pressure group occupied Shell’s Brent Spar – a floating oil storage buoy at which tankers would load up on crude – to stop it being sunk and disposed of at sea in 1995. “The legislation that came into effect after Brent Spar is what drives North Sea decommissioning,” says Neilson.
. . . when the Brent Spar campaign turned out to be such a scam. Far more pollution was caused by towing it in and recycling it than would have been released by a simple burial at sea.

I suspect the Brent Spar campaign was organised by the oil industry to provide a reason to avoid prompt decommissioning, then they disappear and leave the cost to the taxpayer.

posted on Aug, 11 2016 @ 06:58 PM
Perhaps those oil rig structures could be repurposed for other uses, like emergency docking or supply stations, or foracademic research in oceanography, meteorology, tidal based power generation. It would cost millions to put down foundations like that, especially somewhere in the North Sea. Maybe they could create artificiai islands by having gently sloping walls.

posted on Aug, 11 2016 @ 08:15 PM
a reply to: Kester

I seemed to be involved in the Whacky races where ever i worked be it Kishorn , Ardesier or Nigg or Portsmouth , i can remember being in the back seat of a crazy scousers car one morning rolling a joint while he was doing his usual 125 mph on the motorway , crazy days when you look back at them .

posted on Aug, 12 2016 @ 02:20 AM
a reply to: stonerwilliam

There I was thinking the wacky races were just the Highlanders getting home.

The great summer of '76 and driving race to London for our week off.

The man who fell out of the bus window has become legend.

Geordie went to the toilet and when the bus went round a bend he went out the window middle of nowhere on a snow covered Rannoch Moor - all the guys were queueing up banging the door waiting for a pee, didn't know he was lying in a ditch miles back till some van driver saw him.

posted on Aug, 12 2016 @ 09:08 AM
a reply to: Kester

Sorry Kester, I'm not really buying too much about how this is unique. If the fail to remove the oil infrastructure yet are legally obliged to do so then that's something to be pursued - if that is definitely the case and was agreed. But was it? Scotland and the SNP have been happy to talk about the material wealth the energy companies created so I have to assume some responsibility lies elsewhere, not just with the energy companies.

Many areas in Britain are ones where the young have to leave for anything like a realistic prospect. If that particular area is close to your heart, then I understand the frustration, but it's not that unique, but even if it was - who are you looking to point a finger at? I know how harsh this will sound, but if you settle/live in an area where there are no opportunities, why are you in some way entitled for others to come along and create that opportunity for you? If the wind turbine project is generating employment in that area, doesn't that kind of negate your premise?

posted on Aug, 12 2016 @ 10:35 AM
a reply to: Kester

Hey thanks for that link to the oil rigs , i spent 8 month on that one called the ali baba aka emerald producer or morgage reducer as we called it

None of this incredulous happening ever reached the media ? the guy who posted the photo George paton , i used to find him sleeping at his dek when i went in to the office on night shift to get work signed off on , The hardest thing he did was order the meals and walk around once a night to show he was there and the guy was on £ 2500 a week in 1990 , i saw his pay slip one night wow .

it was discovered that over 40 people on that job were ghosts and someone was pocketing 40 health pay packets every week but nobody was prosecuted for it .

One week the wages were not in the bank on a friday and 2 suitcases full of cash appeared later to give the men a 200 quid sub till everything was sorted out . It was quickly realised that they were just taking any number you gave them and handing you the money - no questions asked and some guys went in 3-4 times
without a hitch .

Off the top of my head that refit was 100+ million over budget as they seemed to be in party mode in Dundee when it was there , i can remember 20 + black rubbish bags of empty beer cans and bottles being found in a roof space when she came in to Invergordon .

But it was the night that someone put magic mushrooms in the scaffolders tea ern as revenge on one of them peeing in another ern , what a state they were in ALL of them had to be taken off the job , Their foreman was locked in the toilets screaming his head off everytime someone called his name on the radio

From what i remember that rig seemed cursed as it had taken 15+ lifes of men killed on it and rumour had it that some foreign worker was welded in a space while he slept and it as years later before the body was discovered and hushed up .

thanks for the memories
edit on 12/8/2016 by stonerwilliam because: (no reason given)

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