Co-operative Group to build new wind farm
The Co-operative Group has started work on building a new wind farm in Coldham, Cambridgeshire using expertise from across the groups family of businesses.
Part of a new joint venture with Ventus Funds, the £18.5 million 14 MW wind farm will see seven turbines installed adjacent to The Co-operative’s existing eight turbines all on its own farmland.
The Co-operative Group said that all the energy generated from White Mill will be directly procured by the group through an exclusive power-purchase agreement, securing a long term green energy source for the business. The group added that it is now well on the way to achieving a key element of its ethical plan to generate 25% of its electricity needs from its own renewable energy projects by 2017
The seven new turbines, supplied by REpower, will offset 26,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide each year and, combined with the existing wind farm, will generate in excess of 70 GW hrs electricity per year – enough to supply approx. 16,500 homes.
Groundwork has now commenced at White Mill and installation of turbines at the site will begin in spring 2012.
Rob Ellis, sustainable development manager at The Co-operative Group, said: “We are very pleased to have reached this point where we can now begin work at White Mill. By bringing together expertise from across our Co-operative businesses, along with the creation of a new joint venture with The Ventus Funds, we are delighted to be further increasing the amount of renewable energy we are generating from our very own wind farm and contributing to the target set out in our ethical plan."
James Sutcliffe, of the Renewable Energy Finance team at The Co-operative Bank, said: “This is a clear example of the Group’s family of businesses working together to take positive action on areas important to our members whilst delivering benefits for the local community at the same time.
“We firmly believe that for the UK to move to low carbon economy it will require a diverse mix of energy sources. Projects such as this can make a significant contribution.”
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