Brechfa Forest West Wind Farm Officially Opens
- 57MW onshore wind farm with capacity to power 38,000 Welsh homes
- New £11million community fund makes first awards
- £100m investment benefits local businesses
Today, Hannah Blythyn, Minister for Environment at Welsh Government and Hans Bünting, COO Renewables of innogy SE, will officially open Brechfa Forest West; a new onshore wind farm, located north of Carmarthen, South Wales. The renewable energy project has an installed capacity of 57.4MW and can generate enough energy to meet the equivalent electricity needs of 38,8001 average Welsh homes annually. Brechfa Forest West Wind Farm, which was awarded Renewable Energy Project of the Year at the Business Green Leaders Awards, will no doubt help deliver on Welsh Government’s target for 70% of Wales’ electricity consumption to be generated from Welsh renewables by 2030.
There are 28 Senvion MM92 turbines at Brechfa Forest West Wind Farm which is located within Natural Resources Wales’ Brechfa Forest. The wind farm started generating for the first time in January 2018. innogy started construction less than two years ago in November 2016. The project has delivered significant opportunities and investment for local businesses with almost £40 million being invested in Wales during the 20 months of construction.
“It is a very proud day for innogy and marks the culmination of a tremendous amount of hard work by many people. It is our first onshore wind farm to be built in Wales for 12 years and has been built by local people using local materials wherever possible. Over 70% of the materials for the civils works were procured from within 30km of site. Over the next two years, we look forward to completing another two onshore wind projects in Wales, Mynydd y Gwair and Clocaenog Forest Wind Farm, which in addition to Brechfa Forest West Wind Farm equate to a total investment of around £272 million. Brechfa Forest West Wind Farm will bring benefits to Wales for many years to come.”
Hannah Blythyn,, Minister for Environment, Welsh Government said:
“I’m really pleased to be at Brechfa Forest today to celebrate the inauguration of the £100 million wind development, and the launch of the £459,200 annual Community Investment Fund. We want to generate enough electricity from renewables in Wales to equate to 70% of the electricity we use in Wales by 2030. We are well on the way to this target and electricity generation from renewables in Wales has trebled since 2010. Onshore wind developments such as Brechfa Forest have played a major part in this success and to achieve these goals we need more such developments. I look forward to seeing the long term difference the Brechfa development and its associated fund will make to this part of Wales.”
Clare Pillman, Chief Executive of Natural Resources Wales said:
“The environment is our most valuable natural asset and sustainable initiatives such as this are a milestone for the development of renewable energy in Wales. Projects like Brechfa Forest West on NRW Managed Estate are testimony to our working partnership with Innogy, to secure the environmental benefits and the economic opportunities onshore wind farms represent for Wales and our Welsh communities.”
The celebrations onsite also mark the official launch of the Brechfa Forest West Community Fund. The fund will invest over £11 million into the neighbouring area over the expected 25-year operational lifetime of the project.
 Energy predicted to be generated by the proposal is derived using wind speeds monitored in the local area and correlating to meteorological models seeded with historical weather data obtained from satellite, surface-based and airborne measurement systems, which provide longer term data. The calculations are based on 28 turbines each with an installed capacity of 2.05MW. The energy capture predicted and hence the derived homes equivalent figures may change as further data is gathered. Equivalent homes supplied is based on an annual electricity consumption per home of 4500 kWh. This figure is supported by recent domestic electricity consumption data available from The Digest of UK Energy Statistics and household figures from the UK Statistics Authority.