Germany

Germany

German municipal utilities buy into offshore wind

Two more German municipal energy companies -- Stadtwerke München and Heag Südhessische Energie -- have taken the leap into offshore wind. Stadtwerke München is Munich's utility, while Heag operates in Darmstadt. Each has acquired a 24.9% stake in Wetfeet Offshore Windenergy, the project company behind the 400 MW Global Tech 1 wind farm planned for the North Sea. Wind developer Financial Consulting, which sold the stakes, retains a 40% share in Wetfeet, having sold a further 10% to private investor Aktiwo. With all permits now in place, construction on Global Tech 1, to consist of 80, 5 MW turbines, is to begin this year with completion by 2013. When fully operational, annual output is forecast at around 1.4 TWh. The project is part of a cluster of offshore wind farms with a cable link to shore that is already under construction by transmission network company E.ON Netz. The investment by the Munich and Darmstadt utilities follows the Trianel initiative, in which around 80 predominantly German municipal utilities are involved. In January 2008, Trianel acquired a 300 MW stake in the 400 MW Borkum West 2 offshore wind project in the North Sea (Windpower Monthly, March 2008).

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