2,000 jobs are to be created in 40 new wind farms by 2018 in an €8 billion project, an Irish subsidiary of a US group has announced.
Element Power has signed a contract with Britain’s electricity grid to supply it with renewable energy over two dedicated subsea cables from Ireland to Wales.
The new wind farms are proposed for Co Meath, Westmeath, Kildare, Laois and Offaly.
Element Power says it is in discussions with An Bord Pleanala about making a planning application under a process for major infrastructural projects. It has begun negotiations with land owners.
The company says there will be no overhead lines from the wind farms as cables will be laid on the verge of public roads in a similar manner to phone lines.
The project is expected to generate 2,000 full time jobs in the operation, maintenance and servicing of the wind farms.
Element Power, which has operations in 12 countries, has signed a contract to supply €1.2bn of electricity to Britain’s National Grid UK.
The project is being financed by investment from its parent US private equity group Hudson Clean Energy Partners.
In a statement, National Grid UK, the operator of the UK electricity network, confirmed that a firm grid connection of 3,000 megawatts has been awarded to global renewable energy developer, Element Power.
It said “this is the first such dedicated UK connection offered to an Irish renewable energy exporter and enables Element Power to progress ‘Greenwire’ – a series of connected projects exporting wind power generated in the Midlands of Ireland to the UK via two independent subsea cables.”