Page last updated at 17:38 GMT, Tuesday, 29 July 2008 18:38 UK

Wind firm promises job generation

Wind turbine
Mr Salmond said the company was creating valuable jobs in a rural area

The first minister has announced wind farm extension plans for East Lothian while opening a power company's office expansion in southern Scotland.

Natural Power's new office space at Dalry in Dumfries and Galloway will enable 50 new jobs to be created.

Meanwhile, a 22m investment will see nine turbines built at the Crystal Rig development near Dunbar.

Alex Salmond said it was "hugely important" that such firms chose to locate in rural areas.

He made the announcement during a visit to Natural Power's headquarters in Dalry.

Mr Salmond said such developments showed the "resilience" of the Scottish economy.

He added that it was now "virtually certain" the country would meet its target of generating 31% of its energy from renewable means by 2011.

'Prosperous future'

"I am delighted that Natural Power is growing as a company and growing in Scotland," he said.

"It is hugely important to the rural economy of the south west of Scotland that such companies have their headquarters in places like Dalry.

"I wish both Natural Power and Crystal Rig a long and prosperous future in renewable energy in Scotland."

The Crystal Rig wind farm lies in the Lammermuir Hills south of Dunbar.

Its turbines are situated in the areas covered by both East Lothian and Scottish Borders Councils.


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