The Scottish Government, which originally granted permission to the Viking Energy Shetland development in 2012, welcomed the Supreme Court’s decision yesterday.
Energy Minister Fergus Ewing said: “This positive decision gives the green light to the project, but there are issues which Viking and other projects on the Scottish islands still need to overcome.
“The UK Government needs to provide greater certainty about the financial support it has promised to provide to Scottish islands projects.
“The windfarm also establishes the case for a link to connect Shetland for the first time to the mainland national grid – paving the way for more exports and further renewable energy opportunities for the Islands, including community projects and marine energy developments.
“I look forward to continued working with UK Government to ensure that we deliver on the promises made by Ed Davey at the Scottish Islands Renewables Delivery Forum I co-chaired with him on January 15, to provide certainty on the support which Viking would be able to access when built and to secure the necessary state aid approval from the European Commission.”
And Energy Isles, which is developing a windfarm in Unst and Yell, said Viking would “open the door to further renewables projects that would significantly benefit Shetland communities”.
Chairman, Paul Riddell, said: “It’s very rare that an island community with a successful but fragile economy gets to create a whole new sector, but that is what Viking and the interconnector will enable Shetland to do.
“This judgment gives Energy Isles the potential to bring much-needed income and employment to those areas of Shetland like Unst and Yell which are simply not benefiting from the current economic good times.”
He added: “It’s also about looking ahead 20, 30, 40 years and trying to build a future for our children and grandchildren when the world we take for granted today will have changed dramatically.”