GE makes first equity investment in wind power in Ireland

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GE makes first equity investment in wind power in Ireland

GE Energy Financial Services has announced that it has made its first equity investment in Ireland's wind power market by acquiring two wind farm construction projects from Element Power, the company managing construction of the projects. Financial terms of the sale were not disclosed.

The wind farms, with a combined capacity of 51 megawatts, will be powered by the GE's flagship 2.85MW wind turbines with 103m rotors.

The 17MW Acres wind farm is near Ballyshannon, Co. Donegal, 210 kilometres northwest of Dublin. Construction completion of Acres is scheduled in the first quarter of 2015.

The 34MW Barranafaddock wind farm is near Ballyduff, Co. Waterford, 230 kilometres southwest of Dublin. Construction of Barranafaddock is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2015.

Mike O'Neill, Element Power president, stated:

The Acres and Barranafaddock wind farms illustrate the complementary fit between Element Power's development, construction and operations expertise and GE's capital and wind turbine technology.

Andrew Marsden, a managing director and European leader at GE Energy Financial Services, stated:

The combination of Ireland's strong wind resources with a stable regulatory regime and well-structured feed-in tariff for wind energy present attractive growth opportunities for us, our partners and the country. We value our partnership with Element Power and are exploring other opportunities to work with them and others in Ireland and across Europe as we seek to expand our portfolio of energy investments.

With an expected life of 25 years, the wind farms projects will help Ireland meet its target of generating 40 percent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2020, more than double the percentage required by the European Union. The wind farms are expected to generate enough electrical energy to power more than 33,300 homes in Ireland and avoid the emission of up to 75,000 tons of greenhouse gases.

GE Energy Financial Services is one of the world's biggest investors in wind power, with a portfolio of wind projects spanning nine countries, with a capacity totaling more than 12 gigawatts in operation or under construction.

Element Power is a global renewable energy developer that develops, acquires, builds, owns and operates a portfolio of wind and solar power generation facilities worldwide. Element is present in 10 countries, and over 5,300MW of projects in development. Element Power is owned by Hudson Clean Energy Partners, a global private equity firm dedicated solely to investing in renewable power, alternative fuels, energy efficiency and storage.

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