Wind Wire: All systems go

After a month's trial run, the 9.6 MW Orlice Wind Farm near Sibenik, with Enercon 800 kW turbines, became fully operational last month, supplying electricity to the Croatian state-owned power company Hrvatska Elektroprivreda (HEP).

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The EUR12.7 million project, owned by Germany's Enersys, is to produce 24 GWh a year, enough to supply a small town of around 20,000 inhabitants.

Enersys has been operating in the Sibenik area north-west of Split since 2006, when 14 wind turbines came online at Trtar-Krtolin with a combined capacity of 11.2 MW, supplying HEP with 87 GWh of electricity to date. The renewable energy developer is now focusing on its third project, the 34 MW Ponikve Wind Farm near Ston.

Construction of the EUR40 million project's 16 turbines is likely to start next year. Enersys expects a return on its investment in 12 years. A government-mandated purchase price to stimulate renewable energy development has been in place in Croatia since March 2007. Sibenik-Knin County produces the most energy from renewable sources in Croatia and the area's development plan proposes 18 more wind farms with a combined capacity of 500 MW.

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