RWE buys East Celtic wind farm off Wexford coast

Deal boosts Germany energy giant’s Irish projects

Germany energy multinational RWE has bought East Celtic wind farm off the Wexford coast from Irish company Western Power Offshore Holdings.

RWE plans to spend €1.5 billion in the Republic on green energy projects between now and 2030.

The German-based multinational confirmed on Wednesday that it has bought the East Celtic wind farm from its Irish owner, Western Power Offshore Holdings, for an undisclosed sum.

Located in the Celtic Sea between 9km and 36km off the Wexford and Waterford coasts, East Celtic’s first phase will deliver 900 mega watts of electricity, roughly similar to two power plants, by 2030.

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RWE’s move doubles its existing Irish offshore wind projects. The company is working in partnership with local player, Saorgus Energy, on the Dublin Array wind farm, off the Dublin and Wicklow coasts.

That will be capable of providing 600 mega watts to 900 mega watts of electricity once it is completed.

Peter Lefroy, RWE’s head of offshore development Ireland, dubbed the Celtic Sea deal a “significant step” in the growth of the group’s Irish business.

Western Power, made up of experienced renewable energy developers, carried out the initial work on East Celtic.

East Celtic is seeking a foreshore licence from the Government that will allow it to survey the proposed areas to determine the project’s final design.

The surveys’ results will be included in the project’s Environmental Impact Assessment Report, that will form part of its overall planning application.

RWE said that it has met representatives of the local fishing industry to brief them on the change of ownership and update them on its plans. The group has also spoken to politicians from the area.

“We will be holding a series of public consultations on the project at different stages of the development process where we will share additional information and seek the public’s views,” said Mr Lefroy.

He explained that RWE has yet to decide on the project’s overall size, turbine locations and types, cable routes and land-based facilities needed.

“Through public consultation, we will gather public opinion and feedback on the project and that will inform our understanding of the views of those living and working in the vicinity of the wind farm,” Mr Lefroy pledged.

RWE Renewables Ireland East Celtic Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the German group, will develop the project.

RWE also owns an onshore wind farm Dromadda Beg, Co Kerry and battery storage at Balbriggan, Co Dublin and Lisdrumdoagh, Co Monaghan.

Government climate plans target 7,000 mega watts of electricity from offshore wind by 2030.

Barry O'Halloran

Barry O'Halloran

Barry O’Halloran covers energy, construction, insolvency, and gaming and betting, among other areas