Utility set to triple its capacity

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Dutch utility Essent is set to triple the capacity of its two wind farms in Eemshaven, on the north Dutch coast. The 94 turbines at its Eemsmond wind farm and the 40 at Eemshaven wind farm, all dating back to the 1990s, are a mix of NEG Micon and American Kenetech machines with a combined capacity of just 44 MW. They are being replaced with modern 3 MW units from Germany's Enercon. A construction permit for the repowering has been granted while the application for an environmental permit is currently being prepared. In all, 52 new turbines will be installed to give a combined capacity of 156 MW, says Essent. Enercon refuses to comment or give further details. Essent is optimistic work can start early in 2008 and once complete the two wind farms will increase the combined volume of output a year from 77 GWh to 470 GWh -- enough to supply 145,000 households, equivalent to half the households in the province of Groningen.

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