Ark­low wind farm to get in­vest­ment of up to €2bn

Wicklow People (West Edition) - - NEWS - Myles Buchanan at the Wick­low County Coun­cil meet­ing

SSE, the re­new­able en­ergy devel­oper and gen­er­a­tor, made a pre­sen­ta­tion at the monthly meet­ing of Wick­low County Coun­cil on the com­pany’s pro­posed wind park de­vel­op­ment at Ark­low Bank.

SSE plans to in­vest be­tween €1 bil­lion and €2 bil­lion to de­velop the Ark­low Bank Wind Park to its min­i­mum 520MW po­ten­tial. When fully com­pleted, the new off­shore wind farm will be ca­pa­ble of gen­er­at­ing enough re­new­able elec­tric­ity to power al­most half a mil­lion homes each year.

SSE has a 99-year fore­shore lease, granted in 2002, for the de­vel­op­ment of a min­i­mum 520MW off­shore wind farm at a shal­low wa­ter sand­bank at Ark­low Bank in the Ir­ish Sea. The fore­shore site is sit­u­ated be­tween 7km and 13km off the coast­line.

Mar­ian Troy, Head of Cor­po­rate Af­fairs for SSE Ire­land, said: ‘Af­ter years of be­ing stalled, Ire­land is now at a point where the off­shore wind en­ergy rev­o­lu­tion is about to be­gin, and Wick­low can be at the fore­front of that rev­o­lu­tion. Wick­low County Coun­cil has shown real lead­er­ship in the pro­mo­tion of the op­por­tu­nity that off­shore wind en­ergy can play to in­crease em­ploy­ment in the county’s coastal com­mu­ni­ties. The Coun­cil’s ‘Eco­nomic Think Tank Ac­tion Plan’ as well as its more re­cent ‘Lo­cal Eco­nomic and Com­mu­nity Plan’ set out a clear frame­work and spe­cific ob­jec­tives through which Wick­low can re­alise the po­ten­tial ben­e­fits of its mar­itime as­sets through off­shore wind en­ergy’.

As part of the pre­sen­ta­tion, the com­pany is­sued an in­vi­ta­tion for a del­e­ga­tion from the Coun­cil to visit a sim­i­lar wind park in Scot­land.

Cllr Pat Vance, Cathaoir­leach, Wick­low County Coun­cil, thanked the com­pany for the in­vi­ta­tion and said: ‘It would be im­por­tant for the elected rep­re­sen­ta­tives to see for them­selves what the po­ten­tial im­pact of these tur­bines would be on the Wick­low land­scape/seascape’.

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