Scottish Salmon Company builds hydro plant at Russel Burn – Fishfarmer Magazine

Scottish Salmon Company builds hydro plant at Russel Burn07 May, 2013 –

The Scottish Salmon Company (SSC) has been working with The Applecross Trust and Dulas Hydro Generation to develop a 500KW hydro-electric scheme at Kishorn on the Russel Burn.

The scheme, which started construction last month (April), should be operational in October 2013 and is designed to last over 100 years. 

Financed by Dulas, who will pay rent to the Applecross Trust, the power generated will go to SSC’s adjacent farm at Russel Burn helping to reduce operating costs and increase the level of control over the flow and temperature of the water, which is essential to fish health.

The hydro scheme will also go a long way towards helping achieve a zero carbon footprint at the Russel Burn site as part of SSC’s Environmental Management Scheme.

Surplus power will be exported on to the National Grid, with the income going back to Dulas.

Henry Dalgety, SSC’s manager at Russel Burn explains:

“The hydro-electric scheme will see us generating our own power in a sustainable and environmentally friendly way. Above and beyond this, however, it allows us to more accurately control the flow of water, which will pass down a buried pipeline to a power house located close to our farm, from Loch Coire non Arr. 

“It can be used to cool the water to the fish farm in summer (when it runs down an underground pipe).  In the spring time when warmer water is preferable, the hydro can also be used to control the flow of water down the burn which in turn can influence the natural heating effect, making the hydro a valuable aid to maximizing the site’s efficiency both economically and in terms of healthy fish production.”

The scheme makes use of a dam recently been built by The Scottish Salmon Company that allows the high level of rainfall in the region (over 3 metres a year) to be stored and released slowly over a longer period, therefore giving a longer period of power production. 

Archie MacLellan for The Applecross Trust, the local land owner, added

“The charitable trust is committed to ensuring the special character of the Applecross peninsula is preserved in a responsible and progressive manner and we are delighted to support this scheme. The hydro has been designed to last for over 100 years and will help sustain income to the Applecross Trust for investing in delivery of its charitable objectives.”

Nick Curtis of Welsh company Dulas Hydro Generation Limited, an employee owned company that builds, operates and owns small scale hydro-electric schemes added:

“The hydro scheme at Russel Burn is an excellent example of three organisations committed to working together, and helping to sustain a vital industry in the North West of Scotland.”

GG Mackenzie, a local contractor from Garve will be undertaking the civil works.  Gilbert Gilkes & Gordon from Cumbria will be providing the turbine.