Financing organised

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Finding backers for wind projects is one problem for which the Netherlands does seem to have found a solution. "Financing of wind power is no problem anymore," says Peter Blom from Triodos Bank in Zeist, which specialises in investment in worthy causes. At the end of last year Triodos invited investors to put their money into Windfonds, a growth fund for financing wind energy projects (Windpower Monthly, January 1994). Windfonds now has NLG 8 million at its disposal and Blom believes the bank's target -- NLG 25 million -- will soon be reached.

The fund is to provide risk capital and as such has a multiplying effect, says Blom. "We used to be about the only bank lending money for private wind energy projects. Nowadays we have more and more competition from the more commercial banks," he adds. Of the NLG 8 million in the Windfond, about NLG 6 million comes from private households. The incentive for people to buy shares in the fund is the knowledge that they can compensate for the environmental damage caused by their electricity consumption, explains Blom. Another NLG 2 million has been invested by companies, most notably The Body shop, a British cosmetics firm.

Triodos Bank is already actively involved in a number of wind energy projects. With its development partner, consulting company Energy Connection, the bank has developed projects totalling some 30 MW in installed capacity, some of which also have utility involvement. Triodos and Energy Connection have projects for a further 30 MW in the pipeline, including a project in Zeewolde, a development near the Eastern Scheldt storm flood barrier in the southwest and the Kreekrak project. Supply of turbines to the Kreekrak wind farm is being fought out in the courts (Windpower Monthly, October 1993). Dutch company NedWind and rival Vestas from Denmark are both in the running as suppliers. Blom says a decision on the turbine supplier can be expected within the next few months.

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