Coillte Renewable Energy and SSE Renewables are jointly exploring a 72-megawatt (MW) renewable energy project at Gortyrahilly, Co Cork, which could involve an investment of over €80m.
The project, a proposed wind farm that could range from 60MW to 72MW depending on final turbine selection, is intended to comprise approximately 12 wind turbines and could generate enough renewable energy to power up to 48,000 homes.
Sources within the wind farm development industry said such a project generating 72MW could involve an investment of around €80m.
The proposed wind farm would be situated at Gortyrahilly on a large site, approximately 710 hectares, located close to the Cork-Kerry border.
A community benefit fund could be established, which may include funding for wider community initiatives once the wind farm enters commercial operation. Community investment opportunities may also be explored, as outlined in the Government’s new Renewable Energy Support Scheme (RESS).
As the project will have an export capacity of between 60MW and 72MW, it is likely to qualify as a Strategic Infrastructure Development (SID).
A wind farm with an output over 50MWs is classed as a strategic infrastructure development and may seek permission directly from An Bord Pleanála rather than a local planning authority.
A pre-application SID meeting request was submitted to An Bord Pleanála in September by the co-development partners. The case is due to be decided around the end of January next year.
SSE and Coillte also announced plans for a proposed 60MW wind farm development at Drumnahough, Co Donegal, in May.
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