Greencoat Renewables signs wind deal with FuturEnergy Ireland

7 Sep 2023

The Sliabh Bawn wind farm in Roscommon, Ireland. Image: Keith Arkins

Greencoat plans to invest more than €1bn into projects under the new agreement by 2030 and said this will help Ireland hit its climate targets.

Dublin-headquartered energy company Greencoat Renewables has signed a long-term strategic agreement with FuturEnergy Ireland, the joint venture of ESB and Coillte.

Greencoat said this is its first strategic framework agreement and will provide access to a long-term pipeline of Irish onshore wind projects. The agreement will allow Greencoat to acquire project stakes under a forward sale basis, subject to the consent of relevant stakeholders.

The Dublin energy company expects to invest more than €1bn of enterprise value into projects under the framework by 2030. Greencoat investment manager Paul O’Donnell said the agreement will make a “significant contribution” to Ireland’s 2030 climate targets and “broader net zero ambitions”.

“The framework will provide access to long-term contracted cashflows and forms an integral part of our strategy as we re-invest organic cash to secure attractive new investments,” O’Donnell said.

“As the largest owner of onshore assets in Ireland, representing an investment of over €1.4bn over the last six years, we are well-positioned to deliver these critical projects.”

This two entities said this agreement will utilise FuturEnergy Ireland’s unique pipeline of projects and its expertise in renewable energy project development. The joint venture was established in 2021 to accelerate Ireland’s transformation to low carbon energy and aims to deliver 1GW of onshore wind projects by 2030.

“This agreement will help to accelerate the commercialisation of projects and leverage its many benefits and efficiencies to enable us to deliver a large pipeline of renewable energy projects in support of national and EU climate goals,” FuturEnergy CEO Peter Lynch said.

“This in turn will result in the faster delivery of our renewable energy projects that are urgently needed to reduce carbon emissions.”

While Greencoat was initially focused on acquiring and managing wind farms across Ireland, it has substantially increased its presence in Europe over the past few years.

In April 2021, Greencoat acquired the Glencarbry windfarm in Co Tipperary, while in February of the same year it entered the Nordic market by acquiring a Finnish windfarm for around €60m.

Last April, it struck a deal to acquire 50pc of German offshore windfarm Borkum Riffgrund 1. The acquisition was announced days after Greencoat raised €281.5m in an oversubscribed round to fund investment plans in Ireland and continental European markets.

Earlier this year, Greencoat announced it had acquired a 22pc stake in the Butendiek windfarm in Germany’s exclusive economic zone in the North Sea. Butendiek consists of 80 Siemens 3.6MW turbines which have been operational since 2015.

Last month, the Dublin company expanded its presence in the European market with the acquisition of the 50MW Andella wind farm in Spain.

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Leigh Mc Gowran is a journalist with Silicon Republic