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Three Irish wind farm projects part owned by GE put up for sale


Renewables: Galetech is a part owner of the windfarms

Renewables: Galetech is a part owner of the windfarms

Renewables: Galetech is a part owner of the windfarms

A 103 megawatt (MW) portfolio of three windfarm projects has been put up for sale by a consortium of owners including Cavan-headquartered Galetech Energy Developments.

The consortium's other members include GE Energy and Belgian renewables firm Storm Management. KPMG is advising them on the sales process, according to industry publication 'SparkSpread', which first reported the planned divestiture.

The consortium is selling a 23MW project at Taghart in Co Cavan, a 34MW project in Co Offaly called Cloghan, and a 46.2MW scheme called Pinewood in Co Laois.

The Taghart and Cloghan projects already have grid connection agreements and Pinewood has applied for a connection.

SparkSpread noted that a special purpose vehicle of Galetech, Storm Management and GE owns an 80pc stake in Taghart, with the local McBreen family owning the remainder. The scheme is likely to cost around €30m to develop.

Galetech owns 50pc of the Cloghan and Pinewood projects, with Storm and GE owning 40pc and 10pc respectively of each scheme.

All three windfarm projects are hoping to secure 15-year subsidies under the new Renewable Electricity Supports Scheme (RESS). That new scheme is set to hold its first auction towards the end of the next quarter.

The RESS will hold auctions at regular intervals in order to take advantage of declining technology costs, according to the Government. The RESS also mandates that projects looking for support under the scheme must offer local communities an opportunity to invest in and take ownership of a portion of renewable projects in their local area.

There's continued strong interest in Ireland's renewable energy sector after the Government last year committed to raising the amount of electricity generated from renewable sources to 70pc by 2030.

On Tuesday, Utility giant Electricite de France (EDF) announced that it has acquired a 50pc stake in an Irish offshore windfarm project from a company whose shareholders include developer Johnny Ronan and his former construction business partner Richard Barrett.

It has been previously estimated that the entire Codling Bank project, which will eventually see hundreds of wind turbines erected about 13km off the Co Wicklow coast, could be worth as much as €100m. The site is set to generate up to 1.1 gigawatts of electricity when it's eventually operational. It's likely to cost well over €2bn to develop.

Last November, Greencoat Renewables paid more than €37m for a 20MW windfarm in Killala, Co Mayo. The same month it paid €10.5m for a 14MW windfarm in Co Donegal, called Beam Hill. Those acquisitions brought Greencoat's portfolio of operational wind assets to 461MW.

In January, an NTR fund bought a 19.2MW windfarm in Co Wicklow.

Earlier this month, Dublin-based Empower signed a deal with New Zealand's Morrison & Co - an alternative asset manager - to spend as much as €160m developing seven windfarms in the south west of Ireland.

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