Role of SSE Projects in the economy of the Great Glen

BiGGAR Economics was commissioned by SSE Renewables to consider the economic impact of four of their projects in the Great Glen. The study considered the jobs and gross value added (GVA) that these projects generated by analysing the contracts that were awarded during the development construction and operation of each project

The results of this study were published by SSE Renewables on the 8th June.

The four projects that were analysed were:

  • Bhlaraidh Wind Farm;
  • Stronelairg Wind Farm;
  • Dunmaglass Wind Farm; and
  • Glendoe Hydro.

The development, construction, and operation of these projects have generated and will continue to generate substantial local, regional, and national impacts. Companies from across Highland secured work from these projects including significant civil, electrical and service contractors. This included many companies within the Great Glen.

Location of Suppliers to SSE Great Glen Projects

Our analysis found that during the development and construction phase it was estimated that the four projects supported:

  • £89.6 million GVA and 1,171 years of employment in the Great Glen;
  • £139.3 million GVA and 1,861 years of employment in Highland;
  • £463.6 million GVA and 6,449 years of employment in Scotland; and
  • £746.8 million GVA and 10,939 years of employment in the UK.

This economic activity includes the contractors directly employed to build the four projects, and it also includes the wider economic impact associated with these companies spending in their supply chain (the indirect impact) and the spending of their employees in the wider economy (the induced impact).

There would also be long-term economic impacts associated with the projects as a result of the OPEX, which includes the direct, indirect and induced impacts.  It was estimated that in an average year, the projects would support:

  • £10.9 million GVA and 126 jobs in the Great Glen;
  • £13.6 million GVA and 166 jobs in Highland;
  • £28.8 million GVA and 376 jobs in Scotland; and
  • £43.2 million GVA and 520 jobs in the UK.

The analysis also found that the three wind farms secured a greater share of their contracts from local suppliers than the average for wind farms across the UK. For example, 37% of the total lifetime contract value is expected to be secured within Highland for the three wind farms that were assessed. This is significantly higher than the industry average, where 27% of lifetime contracts are typically secured within the Local Authority in which the wind farm is built.

The full report can be accessed via:

Posted 08.06.20