Straightening the facts on Spanish offshore projects

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You write that there has been no tangible progress on the two other Spanish offshore wind projects beside the one that is now planned in the harbour of Bilbao ("First wind plant in Spain on seabed foundations, Windpower Monthly, May 2004). You also write that two partly overlapping offshore wind power projects close to Cadiz belong to Corporacion EnergÌa Hidroeléctrica de Navarra (CEHN) and Umweltkontor. These statements are not correct. The correct situation is as follows.

First, Umweltkontor is not developing the offshore project at Cabo de Trafalgar. It is being developed by our company, NEK Umwelttechnik AG of Switzerland. We have been developing this project since back in 1999.

We have signed a collaboration contract concerning that specific project with Umweltkontor. But for the past two years and more, Umweltkontor has not been willing to continue with the co-development of that project. As a result of that situation, NEK Umwelttechnik AG, together with its Spanish affiliate NEK Eólica SL, are continuing with the development of the Cabo de Trafalgar wind energy project without the involvement of other companies. The project rights are with NEK and not with Umweltkontor.

Second, we have made substantial progress concerning both the authorisation process for Cabo de Trafalgar, including the environmental impact assessment and the engineering of the technical/maritime part of the project. The development of that project has today reached the stage where a comprehensive report on it can be presented to the responsible authorities within a short period of time. That documentation will consist of all the necessary studies and reports required for the first offshore project in Spain.

Third, our project does not overlap with the project of CEHN at all. While CEHN is developing its project close to the coast, our project is located between 12 and 20 kilometres off the coast of Barbate and Cabo de Trafalgar, Andalucia, where the geophysical measurements have shown appropriate sea bed and tidal current conditions to install the turbines. The project site at that location is large enough to install, in a first phase, around 250 MW with a potential spare space for another 500-700 MW, that it is our intention to develop in the next phase.

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