Enniscorthy Guardian

| 15.5°C Dublin

Solar energy projects included in multi-million euro investment plan

Projects will be entered into the Government's RESS scheme

Three solar energy projects in County Wexford are part of a multi-million Euro investment in planned solar energy projects throughout the country as part of a collaborative initiative between Irish company, Shannon Energy, and Danish solar photovoltaic business, Obton.

The three projects, located in the general Enniscorthy area are at Sweetfarm, St Johns, near Enniscorthy town; Ballymackesy East, near Clonroche, and Tomfarney North, which is also near Clonroche.

The Danish-Irish venture said that eleven projects around the country, including the three in Co Wexford, will be entered into the first round of the Government's Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (RESS) auction, the results of which are expected in July.

The acquisition of the eleven solar energy projects will represent an investment of over €60m in the Irish solar energy sector when developed and will deliver 105 MW of solar power to homes throughout the country.

The project portfolio marks the first phase in the Danish-Irish joint venture's overall €300m investment to provide over 500 MW of renewable solar power in Ireland over the next five years.

It's expected that around 200 jobs will be created during the construction phase of the solar photovolvaic (PV) technology on approximately 400 acres.

The combined 105MW of power generated will be enough to fulfil the yearly energy requirements of up to 20,000 households.

In addition to the eleven projects recently announced, the Shannon Energy Obton venture has secured a pipeline of projects that will bring the total capacity of the overall portfolio to more than 500MW.

CEO of Shannon Energy Noel Shannon said his company was delighted to be working with Obton to secure the projects.

'We hope we are successful in all of these projects in the auction in July as that would allow us to proceed rapidly with the rest of the portfolio in subsequent auctions,' he said.

The company's Chairperson, Gerry Shannon, said that by participating in the auctions Shannon Energy was 'marking a significant contribution' towards achieving the Government's goal of 70 per cent electricity production from renewable sources by 2030.

Meanwhile the CEO of Obton, Anders Marcus, said: 'We foresee that the diversity of this portfolio will allow it to serve as a secure source of power for the grid throughout Ireland, and we look forward to managing this contribution with Shannon Energy for many years to come.'

In order to benefit from support under the RESS scheme projects need to meet pre-qualification criteria which includes offering the communities [they are located in] an opportunity to invest and take ownership of a portion of renewable projects locally.

A national register of community benefit payments will also be established.

Enniscorthy Guardian