€30m windfarm completed outside Knockanure

Stephen Fernane

One of the world's largest energy market operators - Statkraft - has just completed a €30 million project on the Kerry-Limerick border.

The Norwegian company, which has operations - or a 'business profile' at least - in 16 countries, completed the seven wind turbine and battery storage project near Gortdromagouna and Tubbertureen, located to the north-east of Listowel.

The turbines have a capacity to generate upwards of 23MW of electricity, which is sufficient  to power close to 17,000 homes according to the company.

The battery facility can meanwhile store 11MW of electricity at any given time, to release power  to the national grid when demand requires.

The project marks the first of its kind in Ireland by the Norwegian multinational, which also plans to invest a total of €1.5 billion in the national renewable energy market by 2025.

The Statkraft company also obtained renewable energy company 'Element Power' two years ago in a key acquisition.

It's believed that Statkraft plans to develop a project in the near future involving a €1 billion wind-farm off the coast of Dublin that could generate approximately 500MW of power.

The issue of wind farms and battery storage facilities in north Kerry and the Kerry/Cork border remains a contentious issue with local groups protesting a number of live plans over fears for health and safety and the impact on property, especially with regards to battery storage units.

Last month, permission for 14-turbines between Gneeveguilla and Ballydesmond in Cork, was refused by a High Court decision following an objection from Sliabh Luachra Against Ballydesmond Wind-farm Committee. 

Kerry County Council is currently awaiting national guidelines on the future development of wind-farms in the county.