Ballybay was acquired by Gaelectric in 2015, whereas Foyle is being managed by Gaelectric on behalf of Art Generation Limited. Both wind farms, together with Cnoc Wind Farm near Grange in Co. Tipperary, comprise the Blanchfield Cluster which feeds into a 34 MW underground grid connection located near Thurles in Co. Tipperary.
Ballybay Wind Farm, located near Tullaroan in Co. Kilkenny, will comprise six Enercon turbines and will generate 13.8 MW of electricity, sufficient to meet the demand of approximately 9,300 homes. Foyle Wind Farm, located approximately 2.5km to the south east of Ballybay, will comprise four Enercon turbines and will generate 9.6 MW of electricity, sufficient to meet the demand of approximately 6,500 homes. Both wind farms will become operational during Q2 of 2017.
Barry Gavin, Gaelectric Chief Operating Officer, said: “We acquired our interests in the Blanchfield Cluster around the middle of 2015. We are very pleased to have concluded financing agreements to fund construction just 12 months later. In the last four months, we have also energised three windfarms with a total installed capacity of 21MW, at Leabeg in Co. Offaly, Roosky in Co. Roscommon and Monnaboy in Co. Derry. Our operating and ‘under construction’ wind portfolios now comprise about 240 MW across 16 projects. We expect that the momentum in our wind business will continue.”
Richard Walshe equity holder and originator of the Blanchfield Cluster, said: “We have reached important milestones for Ballybay and Foyle wind farms in successfully concluding financing. Both projects will shortly be generating clean, sustainable energy from wind. It has been an enjoyable co-operative experience working with the Gaelectric team which has brought about the completion of the financing structure for the projects in a very professional manner.”
The total financing package is being provided by Allied Irish Banks, plc. The tenor of the financing agreements on both projects is 15 years. Each wind farm will operate in the market under the management of Gaelectric Trading and Market Services (‘GTAMS’) under 15-year service agreements.