Windflow signs Heads of Agreement For UK Turbine
NZX and Media Statement
23 September 2011
Windflow signs Heads of Agreement with North Fish (Shetland) Ltd for first Windflow turbine
Windflow and North Fish (Shetland) Ltd (NFS) have signed a Heads of Agreement to develop jointly the first site using a Windflow 500 turbine in the UK. The HoA is conditional on certain matters being confirmed within the next five months, at which time a full set of project agreements is expected to be executed. This first site is close to Lerwick on the main island of Shetland and installation is planned for summer 2012.
NFS will use the wind-generated electricity to operate a plant to produce carbon neutral biofuel. The process will convert virgin timber into wood chip suitable for use in high efficiency biomass boilers. The biofuel will be supplied to local customers for heating purposes. This innovative solution means that Shetlanders will have access to carbon neutral biofuel at stable prices. The biofuel process can productively use wind energy when it is available, and the wind turbine does not need to be connected to the electricity grid. A wide range of local consultation has been carried out in recent months and a full planning application for the turbine and biofuel plant will be submitted shortly for determination.
This joint development agreement has been designed to speed the delivery of the project. Once the project has been successfully developed and commissioned, it is expected that NFS will exercise its right under the HoA to acquire Windflow's interest in the installed turbine.
Bryan J Rendall (Electrical) Ltd will assist with the installation, operation and maintenance of the turbine which is hoped to be the first of several Windflow turbines on the windy Shetland Islands (population 23,000). The firm has recently been appointed as an approved Dealer for Windflow turbines and it is excellently poised to offer sales, installation and service across the Highlands and Islands. The firm's experience in wind goes back to the earliest days of wind energy development on the Orkney and Shetland Islands in the 1980s. Bryan recently visited the Windflow facilities in New Zealand and the Te Rere Hau wind farm and was impressed by the turbine's electrical capabilities, ease of installation and maintenance, and ability to handle the gale force winds which were blowing that day.
The Windflow 500 has been designed and certified to IEC 61400-1 class 1A, i.e. the most windy and turbulent site classification and is well proven with 98 turbines running at high availability in extremely demanding wind conditions in New Zealand. At the Lerwick site with its 9.5 m/s annual mean wind speed the turbine will have a higher annual energy production than any other turbine of similar rotor size, giving a very attractive payback period.
Two other sites in the UK have received planning permission for the Windflow turbine and two more are expected to secure planning permission in the next month. Windflow also has an option for a site on North Harris for up to three turbines with planning permission.