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Irish 5,000 MW wind “Energy Bridge” to power UK

Mainstream Renewable Power unveils mega scale wind park plan to export power to UK from 2017

The “Energy Bridge” wind park will be built in Ireland

Plans have been unveiled for a mega scale “Energy Bridge” to transform up to 5,000 MW wind power from Ireland to the UK. UK firm Mainstream Renewable Power has unveiled its plans for the Energy Bridge wind park in Ireland’s Midlands, which will export power to plug the UK’s energy gap starting in 2017.

The company has already invested over EUR 500,000 to secure a grid connection to the UK and has identified 900 eligible landowners in the midlands to site the wind turbines.
 
Last week Ireland’s Energy Minister Pat Rabitte met with the UK’s Energy and Climate Change Minister Charles Hendry to discuss the opportunity and have agreed to have a Memorandum of Understanding in place by October this year.
 
The wind farms and the cables will be completely separate to Ireland’s existing electricity system and will not be paid for by the Irish consumer. All of the cables will be entirely underground so will not be visible at any point.

Mainstream Renewable Power said benefits to the bridge once operational include 54,000 new jobs in manufacturing, construction andoperations & maintenance.

Eddie O’Connor, Mainstream Renewable Power CEO, said: “This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for Ireland and especially the midlands; we’re going to supply the UK with a big chunk of its electricity needs, generating EUR 2.5bn per annum in revenue which is almost the same as our dairy exports last year.
 
“This will not be paid for by the Irish consumer but the benefits to Ireland will be enormous. Germany today creates eight direct jobs for each MW installed and then another two to three indirect jobs. We’re talking about 5,000MW so we can realistically create 54,000 new jobs through manufacturing, construction and long-term operations and maintenance.”
 
Mainstream’s Development Manager for Ireland Diarmuid Twomey added: “We’ve spent the past year undertaking analysis to identify the most appropriate areas to site the onshore wind farms. These areas are already designated for wind farm development by the local authority, are in sparsely populated areas and have good wind speeds. We have identified about 900 eligible private landowners, half of which are required to make the project viable.”