Cornish wind power, in the hands of the people
Posted in: Energy
Posted on: 27.04.2016
Did you know that wind power now makes up over half of the electricity used by our customers?
We buy electricity from hundreds of independent, certified wind generators as well as developing our own wind projects: we bought and re-powered Delabole Wind Farm in 2002 and since then we’ve commissioned a further 8MW at our Hampole Wind Farm.
One of the projects we’re hoping to develop is the Big Field Wind Farm in Cornwall. We recently announced some updated plans for this site in north Cornwall – with some UK firsts we’re really excited to tell you about.
We hope it’ll ensure British wind keeps powering our customers well into the future!
We’d like the Big Field to become a wind farm for Cornwall.
That’s why, following feedback from local groups, we’re developing ways for local investors – including residents, community groups and other local organisations – to own a majority equity stake in the wind farm.
As a result, the Big Field could become the largest community-owned wind farm in England.
We’re also committed to delivering a community benefits package worth at least £5,000 per MW per year. That’s equivalent to £192,500 in the first year of operation alone if the wind farm is built at the scale we’re proposing.
This funding could be split between a community fund to support local projects and a local tariff. The local tariff will offer renewable electricity 20% cheaper than Good Energy’s standard prices, to homes within 5km of the wind farm.
Together with the community ownership proposal, this would mean that even more of the economic benefit of the wind farm is re-invested in Cornwall.
Using the latest turbine technology to boost the power output of the site, the Big Field’s efficient turbines would generate enough renewable electricity for 22,000 average homes for 25 years.
It’s possible that we could build and operate the wind farm without government subsidy, a first for the UK.
Onshore wind has a vital role to play in the UK’s transition to a more secure, low-carbon energy future. Recognised as the cheapest large-scale renewable energy source, it is a central part of meeting our renewable energy targets.
2015 was a record year for wind power in the UK, with wind farms generating 11% of the nation’s electricity supply (with about half of that from onshore turbines).
That’s why we’re looking forward to working with the local community to make the Big Field Wind Farm a reality. We hope you’ll support us in our journey.
To find out more about the Big Field Wind Farm, click here.
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