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Rivox Wind Energy Hub

Welcome to our website for the Rivox Wind Energy Hub.

At Belltown Power we are committed to working with local communities and stakeholders to responsibly develop renewable energy projects that help to deliver UK and Scotland's climate change targets and ensure a green and sustainable future for generations to come.

The aim of this website is to provide easy access to the latest key project information as well as setting out how you can get involved and share your views. We look forward to hearing from you.

Show Your Stripes - Professor Ed Hawkins (University of Reading) – Just Scotland
Image Source: Show Your Stripes - Professor Ed Hawkins (University of Reading) Graphics show yearly global temperature change since 1850 (left) & yearly temperature change in Scotland since 1884 (right)

The Climate Crisis

We are facing an unprecedented global climate crisis caused by the use of fossil fuels to power our societies. In the past 50 years weather induced disasters have increased 5-fold. [1]

Necessary Actions

CO2 ppm have risen by 28% in the past 50 years.[2] We need to urgently cut greenhouse gas emissions to prevent irreversible temperature rises and nature loss. As electrification of transport and heating continues our demand for electricity will rise. It is vital we meet this increase, and existing demand, from renewable sources.

Project Contribution

Rivox Wind Energy Hub has the potential to make a sizeable contribution to the decarbonisation of our electricity system and reduce our greenhouse gas emissions. Stats: The project could produce enough energy to power 151,302 homes a year [3].

This project is an opportunity for your community to contribute to tackling climate change in a significant way through hosting and part-owning a modern wind energy hub.

 

“We must go into emergency mode against the climate crisis. We need an avalanche of action.”

UN Secretary-General António Guterres

"If we don't act now, it'll be too late. Every day that goes by in which we don't do something about it is a day wasted,"

Sir David Attenborough

 

  1. WMO, Weather-related disasters
  2. Statista, Historic average carbon dioxide (CO2) levels, Ian Tiseo
  3. RenewableUK, Statistics explained, figures based on a wind energy hub comprising 31 turbines at 6.6MW
Rivox WInd Energy Hub Location Map
Rivox WInd Energy Hub Location

Project Proposal

The site is located approximately 5km west of Moffat in Dumfries & Galloway. It is currently a productive forest, used to grow trees for harvesting as timber and this use will continue, alongside the development proposal.

Belltown Power's Project Team have been working closely with relevant specialists in their field, to carry out extensive site surveys and site assessments. This has helped to define the site's potential which we then consulted local people on during 2022 and early 2023. Your feedback subsequently helped to shape our final proposal which has now been submitted to Scottish Government for consideration.

The final proposal comprises 29 turbines: 8 turbines at 230 metres tip height and 21 at 200 metres. The proposal includes a battery storage facility.  As we move towards a decarbonised network, storing clean energy and discharging it when it is most needed, allows us to help balance the grid network so it remains stable and runs efficiently.  The turbines, together with the energy storage facility and habitat enhancements, collectively make up the Wind Energy Hub.

 

What’s next...

Thank you to everyone who got in touch online and came along in person to our public exhibitions to find out more about Rivox Wind Energy Hub. We received some useful feedback which has helped to shape our final proposals. Now the planning application has been submitted to the Energy Consents Unit of Scottish Government, there is an opportunity for members of the public to comment on it, before it is determined by Scottish Ministers.

All the associated documents will be available to view on this website and on the Scottish Government's Energy Consents Unit website from Wednesday 19 July 2023, reference ECU00003293 where you can also submit formal representations up to 28 August 2023.

More information will be available on this website as this application progresses and you can register for updates or get in touch with the team by emailing rivox@belltownpower.com 

Timeline

7/8 Jun 22

First Consultation Events

Jun – Dec 22

Undertaking EIA Studies and design

25 Jan 23

Second Consultation Events

Jul 23

Planning Submission

Q1 - Q3 24

Expected Planning Determination

Q2 25

Start Construction Target

H2 27

Target Commercial Operation Date

Community

Community – groundbreaking ownership offering

At Belltown Power we fundamentally believe that renewable energy projects should benefit the communities that host them. Communities local to the Rivox Wind Energy Hub will benefit through our groundbreaking community ownership scheme.

We want to go beyond simply offering the opportunity for local investment into our projects and actually take demonstrable steps to enable the uptake of community ownership in a way that benefits everyone.

Belltown’s Community Ownership scheme includes:

  • Giving local community organisations 1% of the equity in the project for free.

  • Enabling them to buy a further 4% of the equity at cost once the project is operational and potentially more at market value, if desired.

Community Benefit and Electricity Discount Scheme

In addition to this attractive ownership offering, we are committed to providing £5,000/MW (index linked) Community Benefit for the lifetime of the project.In the case of Rivox this represents £1,044,000 each year for 40 years (£41,760,000 Lifetime Community Benefit*). *true value will be higher as the community benefit will be index linked to CPI.

We can be flexible as to when and how the community receives this funding and can front load some, or all of this, to best suit the community's needs. Organisations like Foundation Scotland and Local Energy Scotland can advise and assist communities to decide how best to use these funds to maximise benefit locally.

Our flexible structure means this could include
• buying additional ownership of Rivox Wind Energy Hub to achieve higher returns over the operational life
• offering discounted energy bills to local residents during the operational life of the wind farm and
• funding local initiatives with front loaded funding to allow support for larger projects

Based on feedback received from the local community during public consultations, we are proposing to use a significant proportion of the Community Benefit to provide electricity discounts to local residents. To provide some examples of how an electricity discount scheme would work, if Rivox Wind Energy Hub were consented in its current proposed format and 75% of Community Benefit was used to fund an electricity discount scheme (EDS), the following discounts would be realised:

  • households within 2km of a turbine would receive £1500 discount a year
  • households wihtin 5km of a turbine would receive £400 discount a year
  • households within 12km of a turbine would receive £200 a year

This would still leave around £250,000 a year remaining Communiuty Benefit Fund (based on 70% take up of the EDS but less if the take up is higher).

Case Study

Near to our Tirgwynt site in Powys, Wales the Carno Primary School faced closure due to the condition of temporary buildings they were using. Due to our flexible community benefit offering we were able to substitute some of the annual payments with a larger, upfront payment which enabled the construction of a new school building allowing the local school to continue to serve the community for future generations.

Education - inspiring the next generation

We believe passionately in education and have been running the Belltown Education Programme since 2015 with the aim of inspiring the next generation of engineers and scientists who will tackle the climate emergency.

Local Environment

Everyone at Belltown Power is involved in the renewable energy industry through a desire to tackle the climate crisis and nature emergency. In addition to powering over 141,541 homes each year and saving 233,418 tonnes of carbon dioxide each year, we will implement a comprehensive and tailored Habitat Management Plan to ensure that Rivox Wind Energy Hub delivers a net ecological benefit through careful habitat design, creation and management.


* Figures based on a wind energy hub comprising 29 turbines at 6.6MW and recognised assumptions stated here.

Belltown exhibition in Moffat Town Hall in June 2022
A recent Belltown public exhibition in Moffat

Get involved and give your feedback

At Belltown Power, we recognise a fundamental part of good project development is early consultation to ensure local communities and stakeholders are given the opportunity to provide feedback and are kept informed of a project’s progress.

As part of the consultation process, we held two, in-person exhibitions (as well as virtual exhibitions online) in June 2022 and January 2023 for local people to meet the project team. A number of local people attended and we also received feedback online and in the post. 

The first exhibition in June 2022 can still be viewed here Virtual Exhibition 1. We took the feedback from the first consultation and used it to develop the project further, which we then presented during a second round of public consultation in January 2023: you can view the second round exhibition here - see Virtual Exhibition Round 2.

It was encouraging to see so many people come along and provide their views on the proposal and we greatly appreciate all of the feedback from those who came along, got in touch online and sent feedback by post.  Your feedback throughout these consultations has been really valuable in helping to shape the final proposals which have now been submitted to Scottish Government. 

Feedback on the proposal has now closed but you can make formal representations on the proposal to the Scottish Government until 29 August 2023, via the Energy Consents Unit website reference ECU00003293 

If you have any specific queries not answered by the information on this website please email the team at rivox@belltownpower.com 

Any subsequent additional information which is submitted by the Company will be subject to further public notice in this manner, and representations to such information will be accepted as per this notice. As a result of a statutory objection from the relevant planning authority, or where the Scottish Ministers decide to exercise their discretion to do so, Scottish Ministers can also cause a Public Inquiry to be held. Following examination of the environmental information, the Scottish Ministers will determine the application for consent in two ways:

  • grant consent to the proposed Development, with or without conditions attached or
  • reject the application

 

Register

You can still register as a local supplier, or request a call back from one of our team if you have a specific question or concern.

Register

Opportunities for Local businesses and Suppliers

Opportunities for Local businesses and Suppliers

Belltown Power is committed to providing material benefit to the communities that host them. To ensure this happens we will use local supply chain wherever possible. There are a wide range of services and suppliers required to build and operate a wind farm including but not limited to

  • construction, drainage and fencing contractors

  • materials suppliers and building merchants

  • plant hire and security

  • fuel providers and waste management and

  • local hospitality providers and car hire

To understand the full range of opportunities available please register on our supplier database and we will get in touch.

Meet the Buyer

In due course, we will be holding “Meet the Buyer” events where you can meet the project team, we can learn more about your business and we can discuss opportunities to work together.

If you believe you can supply our development or simply want to understand more we would be pleased to hear from you. All you need to do is register on the form above or email us and one of our team will be in contact to collect further details and answer any questions.

News

We're very pleased to confirm submission of our planning application to the Scottish Government for the Rivox Wind Energy Hub.

We would like to thank everyone who contributed to shaping our proposals by providing feedback and attending our public consultations. A physical copy of the planning application is available at Moffat Town Hall offices.

The full planning application and all the associated documents can also be viewed online, on this website (see Project Proposal section) and on Scottish Government's Energy Consents Unit website (www.energyconsents.scot) reference ECU00003293 where representations can also be submitted up to 28 August 2023.

Belltown

  • are continuing to work with Forestry and Land Scotland on ideas for habitat enhancement and with Dumfries & Galloway Council’s Ranger Service; they have committed funding in principle to support the long term plans for developing walking routes.
  • will provide the local community with £5,000 per MW installed per year (index linked) of Community Benefit for the lifetime of the project. Based on the current proposal, this has the potential to generate approximately £1,044,000 a year for local communities for the 40-year lifetime of the project.

Energy bills were identified as a key concern by local residents and public consultations showed that by far the most popular suggested use of Community Benefit was reducing energy bills.In response, Belltown have offered to use a proportion of the Community Benefit fund for an Electricity Discount Scheme (EDS), following feedback from local people.  If Rivox Wind Energy Hub was consented in its current proposed form, residents and businesses in the vicinity of the project would be eligible for significant discounts off their bills, each year for the lifetime of the project. These proposals will be the subject of further discussion with local people in due course.

Belltown also offers a ground-breaking Community Ownership scheme that can bring tangible benefits via the revenue generated by owning a stake in a renewable energy project. The developer offers all the communities where it builds wind energy hubs 1% of the project ownership for free with a further 4% stake being available to purchase at cost once the project is operational. As the project progresses, they will continue to engage the local community to establish how the community can best benefit from this opportunity.

Peter Thomas added; “At Belltown, we fundamentally believe that renewable energy projects should benefit the communities that host them and we look forward to continuing our discussions with local people about the benefits that this proposal can deliver, as the application progresses.”

Following submission, Belltown will continue discussions with community councils and other organisations about the community benefit fund and shared ownership.

Should the proposal be consented, Belltown could start construction in late 2025; the company offers a procurement policy that favours local contractors to ensure they and local suppliers benefit from the project.

As a Section 36 project, the application will eventually be determined by Scottish Government Ministers with Dumfries and Galloway Council as a key consultee. 

This second consultation event will take run from 18 January - 8 February 2023 and will include

In-person Exhibitions

  • Wednesday 25 January, Beattock Village Hall, 0900-1200
  • Wednesday 25 January, Moffat Town Hall, 1400-1900

Please come and meet the team to find out more about the revised proposals, ask questions and share your views.

Virtual Exhibition

If you are unable to attend the exhibitions in person, or would like to view the exhibition material again, a virtual exhibition will be available from 18 January here.

The event has been advertised in local media and an invitation has been sent to local residents by post. We welcome all feedback, which you can submit by returning the feedback form included with your exhibition invitation by Freepost [please use the envelope supplied, no stamp no further address required], or complete it online by 8 February here We look forward to engaging with any questions and feedback you may have about the project.

We have recently installed a temporary meteorological mast – a ‘met mast’ – on the proposed site of the Wind Energy Hub in Rivox. The mast – which was granted planning permission by the local authority prior to installation - will be used to measure wind speed and direction on the proposed site. The data it provides will be used in combination with the noise monitoring that is scheduled to be undertaken, to facilitate our final proposed layout design for the project.

A big ‘thank you’ to everyone who turned out at the public exhibitions we held last week in Beattock Village Hall and Moffat Town Hall. We had nearly 100 people drop in over the two days.

It was very useful for the team to meet local people and to hear your views and to get your ideas and suggestions for the community benefit.

We’d also like to thank all of you who have taken the trouble to send in your Feedback questionnaires in the post: we are busy logging and analysing all of these.

There will be follow up conversations on all aspect of the project with community representatives over the summer and we hope to hold a second public exhibition this autumn, to present more detailed information on certain elements of the proposed wind farm.

If you were unable to attend, you’ll find the exhibition online, on the website here and Feedback is open until 24th June.

Meanwhile if you have any specific questions or issues you’d like to raise with the team please email rivox@belltownpower.com

 

 

 

VIEWS SOUGHT ON RIVOX WIND FARM PLANS

Local residents are being invited to view plans for a new Wind Energy Hub near Moffat. The plans from Belltown Power will be on display for two days in early June and the company are keen to get local feedback.

The Belltown team will be on hand at the two public exhibitions to answer any questions local residents may have and to gather views on the proposal.

The exhibition will include detailed information about the project including visualisations from several viewpoints.

Commenting on the consultation, Peter Thomas, Senior Development Manager at Belltown Power said, “This is our first consultation event and we are keen to hear what local residents think of our plans for the Rivox development. We are trying to reach out to as many residents as we can to get their views. We’re holding exhibitions in Beattock and Moffat as well as a virtual consultation and we have posted out an invitation and feedback form to over 2500 households around the development site.”

Belltown Power were selected by Land and Forestry Scotland (FLS) as the preferred bidder for the Rivox site following a tender process in 2019. The site is currently a productive forest, used to

grow trees for harvesting as timber and this land use will continue alongside the proposed wind farm.

 

A scoping report was submitted to the Scottish Government in June 2021. The current proposal could see up to 31 turbines across the site producing over 200MW of clean energy.

Commenting further, Peter Thomas, said, “We are fully committed to a full community benefit package that includes £5K per MW installed per year for the 40-year lifetime of the project. We’ve also developed a ground-breaking community ownership package that enables local communities to take an ownership stake so that they’re really invested in the project and so it brings tangible benefits to the heart of the community.”   

The online virtual exhibition will run on the website from 1 June to the 22 June showing all the exhibition materials and allowing residents to leave feedback www.belltownpower.com/uk/rivox/

The public exhibitions will be held on Tuesday 7 June and Wednesday 8 June 2022.

  • Tuesday 7 June, Beattock Viillage Hall, 11 – 7pm
  • Wednesday 8 June, Moffat Town Hall, 11 – 7pm