Renewable energy company Airtricity has reached agreement with the Welsh Assembly Government on an option to seek planning permission to create a 100MW wind farm.
The wind farm will be located on Forestry Commission Wales (FCW) managed land near Machynlleth.
The company intends to construct the wind farm, at Nant-y-Moch, working with local partner Dulas.
Airtricity had previously been selected as preferred bidder to develop a wind farm on the site, which is owned by the Welsh Assembly Government and managed on its behalf by FCW.
The land is known as Area D in the Assembly Government’s technical advice note, that sets out its Strategic Search Areas for development of wind energy developments.
Work will now begin on preparing a detailed planning application for the Nant-y-Moch wind farm and Airtricity and Dulas pledge there will be full consultation with local people to inform them of the planning application proposal.
Gerry Burke, Wales and England manager for Airtricity, said: “We are very pleased that our proposal has been selected by Forestry Commission Wales and that we have now signed the Option Agreement for the land with the Welsh Assembly Government.
“Going forward, we will work with the Forestry Commission, our local partner Dulas, a very highly respected Machynlleth-based renewable energy planning consultant and all local stakeholders, on preparing our detailed proposals before we submit a planning application. This project will help the Welsh Assembly Government to meet its renewable energy generation targets, and we also wish to ensure that it will benefit the local community.”
Mr Burke said part of the company’s proposals at Nant-y-Moch will include privately-owned land, for which agreement has also been reached.
This will increase the capacity of the wind farm site to approximately 140MW comprising both FCW and private land.
Dulas Director Ian Draisey said: “This is another step forward for the development of renewable energy in Wales and will help our country play its part in tackling the threat of climate change.
“We are pleased that as a local company we have reached this milestone, working closely with Airtricity. We will now begin work on the preparation of vital information for the planning application.
“We will be consulting fully with people living in the area and aim to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to see the plans and comment on them. We want to ensure that the local economy and community benefit directly from our proposal – and more details will be released as they become available in coming months.”
By Aled Blake
11 April 2008
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