At a Glance
- 8 turbine project
- Distance to nearest turbine – over 700m
- Over 50MW of renewable energy to the Irish electricity grid
- Zero shadow flicker policy
- Height of turbine up to a maximum of 180m
- Total Community Benefit Fund of circa €4.5m
- Associated works will include access tracks, met mast, turbine foundations and hard standing areas, drainage works, temporary site compound, grid systems services, substation, underground electrical and communications cables between turbines and an underground cable to connect the proposed project to a local substation
Need for the Project
The impacts of climate change on our world are indisputable. We are all being challenged to consider the role we play in climate action and how we can reduce our reliance on costly and polluting imported fossil fuels. The world is getting warmer, and extreme weather events are a frequent occurrence. We cannot stop climate change, but we can take action to address it. Renewable energy development is a vital part of that action.
Price hikes have put huge pressure on households and businesses, and exacerbated the cost-of-living crisis. Our electricity demands are also on the rise and providing sufficient supplies to avoid potential power shortages has become ever more challenging.
Furthermore, energy security in Ireland has come into sharp focus. Having our own secure energy supply will shield us from global market energy price increases and continue to help protect families and businesses from the worst effects of a crisis caused by our reliance on fossil fuels. We can tap into our own natural resources and roll out clean, affordable energy that won’t break the bank.
As with all our projects, local appropriateness is a fundamental consideration along with careful site selection. Further optimisation of this project’s design is still in progress, so community feedback on the proposal is very welcome. You can find details on the final page of this brochure on how you can contact us.
The Knockanarragh location was initially identified following a review of areas that could potentially allow for the development of this type. The initial design layouts, which focused on the capacity of this area to produce renewable energy, were updated to incorporate local considerations. These included the project distance from nearby homes along with local environmental constraints, ensuring the project would be suitable and work well for the locality.
As this proposal has a wind energy output of over 50MW, submission directly to An Bord Pleanála as a Strategic Infrastructure Development (SID) application is a requirement. Westmeath County Council will be expected to review and actively input on any submission.
Green electricity has brought significant benefits to a lot of areas in rural Ireland for many years. Electricity generation in Ireland is transitioning and the energy that we are using is switching from fossil fuels including peat and coal to renewable forms of energy. This transition is our best way of taking effective action on climate change.
The potential to extract local economic and societal gain remains with the development of renewable energy projects such as wind farms. Areas that develop renewable energy projects will have the potential to benefit from substantial community benefit funds. At Statkraft, we believe that local communities should play a major role in determining how these funds should be used to maximise the benefit in the local area.
The communities in the area around the Knockanarragh Wind Farm have an opportunity to consider how such a renewable project could make a real difference to the local area. The fundamental principle of our community benefits packages is that we seek to work with local people to deliver increased environmental, economic and social sustainability to local communities. We are very interested in hearing what ideas you have on how this wind farm could deliver the most benefit to you and your local area.