The Scottish Government has approved proposals for a 450MW pumped storage hydro scheme on the shores of Loch Ness.
The Red John project was subject to a Public Local Inquiry last year with the findings and recommendation from the reporter being submitted to Ministers in February 2021 for consideration.
Approval of this £550m project, being developed by ILI Group, could see “hundreds of millions of pounds invested in the local economy and bring up to 700 direct and indirect jobs” said the company.
ILI Group CEO Mark Wilson said: “We are delighted that the Cabinet Secretary for Net-Zero, Energy, and Transport, Michael Matheson, has approved this project.
“This will help pave the way for hundreds of millions of pounds of investment and hundreds of new jobs in the area and will be another major step in Scotland’s ongoing journey to becoming a leader in renewable energy.”
Matheson added: “Scotland is a leader in this field, with excellent hydroelectric power heritage built over the last century and this new scheme at Loch Ness will only add to that.
“As we add more renewable electricity generation across Scotland, investing in pumped hydro storage will be key to balancing our electricity demand with supply and keeping the system secure, as well as creating high quality, green jobs and enabling a green recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
“That is why we continue to call on the UK Government to take the urgent action required in reserved areas to provide investors with improved revenue certainty and unlock potentially significant investment in new pumped storage capacity in Scotland.”