RWE offshore wind farm attracts new investor
RWE Innogy has today agreed terms for the sale of a 10% share in its Gwynt y Môr offshore wind farm with the UK Green Investment Bank. RWE Innogy will generate £220m of new capital as a result of the sale, which will be reinvested into other renewable energy projects within its extensive portfolio.
The transaction will close when the construction of Gwynt y Môr is completed, expected to be towards the end of this year.
Dr Hans Bünting, CEO of RWE Innogy said “This is planned to be the second direct investment from the Green Investment Bank into one of our UK offshore wind farms. By continuing to open up our projects to investors, we maintain our stated objective of being a trusted partner for the transformation of the European energy system, within which the UK has a key role. Our aim is to raise additional capital for the extension of renewable energy in Europe by creating attractive investment models. I am delighted that the Green Investment Bank has chosen RWE once again for its investment in the offshore wind sector. This reinforces the quality and attractiveness of our projects”.
UK Business Secretary, Vince Cable, said: “The Green Investment Bank is playing a game-changing role in financing our transition to a green economy. The Bank has now invested well over £600 million in five offshore wind farms and mobilised £1.3 billion of total funding. This industry has the potential to generate thousands of new skilled jobs and billions in business investment.
“Both the Westermost Rough and Gwynt y Môr projects will use Siemens turbines which demonstrates why their decision last week to build new manufacturing facilities in the UK was so important. Through our industrial strategy we are working in partnership with business to give companies the confidence to invest, securing high skilled manufacturing jobs and a stronger economy.”
UK Energy and Climate Change Secretary, Ed Davey, said: “The UK is number one in the world for investment in offshore wind. This news is proof of the strength of investment in British energy infrastructure – and proof that the Government’s strategy is working – supporting green jobs across the country and delivering secure energy supplies for the future. £34 billion worth of investment has been announced since 2010 thanks to our electricity market reforms which give investors long-term certainty.”
Shaun Kingsbury, Chief Executive, UK Green Investment Bank, said: “The UK has ambitious plans to build on its position as a world leader in offshore wind. We have two roles to play in supporting those plans. Firstly, to directly invest to help developers recycle their capital into the next wave of new renewable energy projects. Secondly, to invest on fully commercial terms to create a demonstration effect which others will follow.”
Gwynt y Môr is a greater than £2billion offshore wind farm on schedule to become fully operational in 2014, when it will be capable of generating enough energy from renewable sources to power the equivalent of approximately 400,000 homes – around a third of the total number of homes in all of Wales.
The construction of Gwynt y Môr to date, has enabled the injection of over £350million into the UK supply chain, created and secured employment for over 2,500 people in the UK, and is expected to sustain over 110 jobs long term through a new multi-million pound operations and maintenance base, which will be built in North Wales.
At the same time, North Wales Communities have been consulted on how to most usefully invest over £19million in community funding over the wind farm’s working lifetime – a topic crucial to Welsh and UK government in the delivery of energy policy. This is in addition to the £690,000 Tourism Fund.