Germany

Germany

SMALL INVESTORS FLOCK TO TAKE PART

German Hessenwind is planning two additional wind projects and is inviting people to invest in them. Minimum input for investors is DEM 5000. The medium term aim of Hessenwind is to install at least one wind station in each Hesse district. Hessenwind hopes its projects will make the path easier for others in the future. The estimated potential for wind energy in Hesse has grown from early predictions of 150 MW to 500 MW.

Hessenwind, a company in Germany set up and part owned by the state of Hesse's energy agency, HessenEnergie, is planning two more wind projects -- in the Main-Kinzig district at Wachtersbach-Brachtal and at Bierstein -- in addition to the two it has already built. A call for investors for the new projects resulted in limited partners putting in DEM 1.2 million in the first four weeks. Further partners are now being sought, whether from Hesse, other German states or from overseas. The minimum input is DEM 5000, with a calculated rate of return of 4%, not including potential tax benefits.

Construction should start in the autumn of initially five Micon 500 kW turbines at each site, costing DEM 11 million. The aim is to later install another two turbines at each site, but for the time being Hesse state has agreed to provide a 25% investment subsidy for only ten turbines. The medium term aim of Hessenwind is to install at least one wind station in each Hesse district. Every district has its own planning office and Hessenwind hopes its projects will make the path easier for others in the future.

So far Hessenwind has built two wind stations in the district of Vogelsberg. Six Micon M700-225 kW units have been installed at Ulrichstein and eight of the same type and a M1500-500 kW unit at Diemelsee-Flechtdorf. Total investment in the projects has been DEM 8.5 million, with DEM 2.62 million contributed by 296 limited partners and 34% provided by Hesse state. The remainder has been borrowed from the Landesbank Hessen-Thüringien.

The estimated potential for wind energy in Hesse has grown from early predictions of 150 MW to 500 MW.

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