Renewable Energy firm RES sells Co Londonderry wind farm for £37m
Renewbale energy giant RES has announced the sale of a wind farm in Co Londonderry to European operator ERG for £37m.
Work on the 10 turbines at Craiggore wind farm, between Dungiven and Coleraine, is not expected to begin until the end of this year.
RES, which is the world's largest independent renewable energy firm, said it was the first deal for one of its subsidy-free wind projects here.
The government subsidy system for large on-shore wind energy projects in Northern Ireland came to an end in April 2017.
A number of schemes that met certain criteria had been able to benefit from a grace period, but that ended on December 31 last year.
RES described the deal for Craiggore as the start of a new era. The company, which is headquartered in Kings Langley, England, operates a series of major wind farms on both sides of the border. It will still take responsibility for the construction phase, which it estimates will represent an investment of around £8m in the Northern Ireland economy.
Speaking yesterday, Lucy Whitford, managing director for development and construction at RES, said: "This is a major milestone for RES and the wider renewables industry.
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"We've been championing the delivery of merchant onshore wind and focusing our efforts on designing the most efficient projects that do not require government support.
"We are delighted to have reached a financial close with ERG on Craiggore.
"This sale marks the start of a new era for renewables, where it is possible to deliver decarbonisation at the lowest cost for consumers."
RES expects the wind farm to be operational by early 2021.
It could be capable of generating up to 25 megawatts of power, which could generate enough electricity for 21,500 households.
Last summer the company opened the £50m Castlecraig wind farm along the Tyrone-Donegal border after a two-year construction period.
The scheme, which is made up of 10 German-made, 125-metre turbines, was built by RES and is managed by the company but owned by infrastructure investor NTR.