The joint venture intends to build two floating wind farms off the Cork/Waterford and Clare/Kerry coasts, and a third fixed wind plant in the Irish Sea off counties Wicklow and Wexford
An Irish-Spanish joint venture is planning three offshore electricity generating fields that will cost up to €6.5 billion ($7.73 billion), according to industry estimates.
Local player DP Energy and Spanish giant Iberdrola will build three offshore wind farms around the Irish coast with capacity to generate 3,000 megawatts (mw) of electricity.
The JV intends to build two floating wind farms off the Cork/Waterford and Clare/Kerry coasts, and a third fixed wind plant in the Irish Sea off counties Wicklow and Wexford. Each will be capable of generating 1,000mw of electricity at full capacity, which DP estimates is enough energy to power nearly a million homes.
The company did not say how much the projects are likely to cost the partners, but industry estimates put the overall cost at about €6.5 billion ($7.73 billion).
At current rates, the floating wind farms would require an investment of more than €2 billion ($2.38 billion) each, while the Wexford project could cost between €2 billion ($2.38 billion) and €2.5 billion ($2.97 billion).
According to Yvonne Cronin, DP’s community and stakeholder liaison manager, the company has applied to the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage for foreshore licences for all three projects.
DP is surveying the areas involved before finalising the most suitable locations for wind farms in each zone. It also exploring the nearby coastlines for landfall locations for the subsea cables that will transmit the electricity generated to the grid.
The company will pinpoint a preferred area and move ahead with the planning process once it has consulted with local communities, the fishing industry and other stakeholders.
The area it is surveying for Inis Ealga off the south coast runs from Robert’s Head in Co Cork to Helvick in Waterford.
The area highlighted for the second floating wind project stretches from Doughmore, Co Clare, to Kerry Head.