Thirty-eight months after construction started, one of the UK’s largest onshore wind farms has come fully online, promising to cut carbon emissions by more than 300,000 tonnes a year.
Vattenfall announced yesterday that its 76 turbine Pen y Cymoedd Wind Energy Project began operating at full power over the weekend, delivering clean power equivalent to the amount consumed by 13 per cent of Welsh homes.
The £400m project, which is now officially Wales’ largest onshore wind farm, is now expected to employ 20 onsite staff for the lifetime of the project.
“To get to this stage of the project safely and on schedule is obviously very important to Vattenfall and our contractors,” said Will Wason, Vattenfall’s project director, in a statement. “I sincerely hope that full generation from Wales’s largest onshore wind farm, producing competitive, clean, predictable power from the valleys will mean a lot to Wales.”
The project is part of a wave of onshore wind farm projects to secure approval before the government effectively blocked financial support for onshore wind farms in line with its 2015 manifesto commitment. Industry insders are now fearful the industry will experience a significant investment hiatus unless prospective onshore wind farms are provided with a new route to market.
Companies across the energy industry are calling on the Conservative Party to reconsider the decision to not allow onshore wind farms to compete for clean energy price support contracts, arguing the sector can build new capacity at a lower cost than any other form of technology, including fossil fuel power plants.