Ørsted to power Amazon with 16MW windfarm in Co Antrim

13 Jan 2022

The Sorne Hill windfarm in Co Donegal. Image: Ørsted

Expected to be operational by 2023, the Ballykeel windfarm will bring Ørsted’s onshore capacity in Ireland to 372MW.

Danish power company Ørsted is developing a 16MW windfarm in Co Antrim that will supply energy to Amazon.

The Ballykeel onshore windfarm site was acquired by Ørsted last June and the company made a long-term fixed-price corporate power purchase agreement (CPPA) with Amazon. A CPPA is when a business agrees to purchase electricity directly from an energy generator in a long-term supply contract.

Under the agreement, Amazon will offtake all power produced by the Ørsted windfarm in Ballykeel, in a first-of-its-kind agreement in Northern Ireland.

Kieran White, vice-president and managing director of Ørsted Ireland and UK, said he was delighted to continue developing renewable energy projects in Northern Ireland and that he looked forward to working closely with Amazon to complete the Ballykeel construction.

“This project is the first project in Northern Ireland to reach FID [final investment decision] under a corporate PPA, which shows that it’s possible to add green power to the Northern Ireland grid in the absence of government subsidies for renewable projects,” he added.

Expected to be in operation in 2023, the Ballykeel windfarm will bring Ørsted’s onshore capacity in Ireland to 372MW in operation and under construction.

Ørsted, Denmark’s largest energy company, entered the wider European market in April last year when it acquired Brookfield Renewable Ireland in a €571m deal. At the time, Brookfield had 389MW of onshore windfarms under construction or in operation in Ireland and the UK, with another 149MW in advanced development and more than 1GW in the development pipeline.

In October last year, it was announced that Ørsted would supply Johnson & Johnson Ireland with more than 1TWh of renewable energy in an eight-year CPPA, as the US company looks to transition to 100pc renewable electricity across its Irish operations.

Outside Ireland, Ørsted also has a partnership with Amazon in Germany. The companies signed a CPPA in 2020 that will see Amazon offtake the output of 250MW from Ørsted’s 900MW Borkum Riffgrund 3 offshore windfarm.

Don’t miss out on the knowledge you need to succeed. Sign up for the Daily Brief, Silicon Republic’s digest of need-to-know sci-tech news.

Vish Gain is a journalist with Silicon Republic