DUNDALK based Oriel Wind Farm Ltd. have confirmed a new partnership with Belgian company ‘ Parkwind’ as part of the bid to build a major wind farm off the coast of Dundalk.
The Belgian firm, one of Europe’s leading offshore Wind Farm developers, has agreed a ‘significant investment’ to become a strategic partner in the Oriel Wind Farm – the proposed 330 MW offshore wind project proposed for the north Irish Sea.
Brian Britton, founder and board member of Oriel Wind Farm confirmed the new partmernship, saying: ‘In our search for a strategic partner, several international offshore wind players were interested in acquiring a stake in Oriel Wind Farm. Our choice for Parkwind is driven by the strong track record and values the company Parkwind stands for. We believe that Parkwind can bring in the necessary knowledge and pioneering spirit to bring this project to a successful end.’
It’s been more than a decade since Oriel Wind Farm first unveiled plans to build the first fully operational commercial Wind Farm developed in Irish waters, with a license area for the development lying 22km off the coast of Dundalk
Ireland is renowned for its vast offshore wind energy potential, with extensive research having been done to harness that energy.
Oriel Wind Farm estimate the development could provide green energy for up to 250,000 homes, and make carbon savings of up 600,000 metric tonnes.
Oriel Project Director Peter Caluwaerts says: “We are confident we can play a vital role for the emerging Irish offshore wind industry. It is our ambition to finalize the construction of the Oriel Wind Farm in 2020, thus assisting Ireland in reaching its 2020 renewable energy targets. To achieve such ambitious timeline, we will immedi-immediately invest in the development of the Wind Farm and set up a full-scale project team, consisting of our own experienced people from Parkwind on the one hand and dedicated Irish professionals on the other hand.’
Parkwind has successfully developed and constructed 3 offshore windfarms located in the Belgian concessions zone in the North Sea. These windfarms, that are also operated by Parkwind provide around 550 MW of green energy to the Belgian market.
Parkwind co- CEO François Van Leeuw states: “Parkwind has a firm ambition to grow internationally. After the successful development and construction of 550MW in the North Sea, we were able to shift our focus quickly to evolve from an experienced but strictly Belgian to an international player in the offshore wind industry. The challenge and opportunity of realizing the first offshore windfarm in Ireland matches perfectly with our entrepreneurial and solution driven company culture.’
Above: Brian Britton of Oriel Wind Farm (inset).