Wind power isn't hot air
PUBLISHED: 12:24 05 May 2006 | UPDATED: 21:51 28 May 2010
A FIRM has made a major breakthrough in the renewable energy market by signing its first deal to buy the power generated by a new wind farm near March. Geotrupes Energy, based near Ipswich, has successfully negotiated to become the purchaser of the power
A FIRM has made a major breakthrough in the renewable energy market by signing its first deal to buy the power generated by a new wind farm near March.
Geotrupes Energy, based near Ipswich, has successfully negotiated to become the purchaser of the power created by the soon-to-be-built six megawatt Ransonmoor wind farm at Doddington.
The deal between the company and Fen Power Ltd follows months of work by Geotrupes' two-man team, managing director James Dunning and commercial director Ashley Turner.
Mr Dunning, a former lawyer, said: "We're very pleased. This shows to our investors that we've stood and delivered."
Geotrupes Energy created a niche for itself in the market for the energy produced by small wind farms when it began working with project operators to help them get off the ground.
It is based on the idea that to build a small wind farm a land owner is likely to need a bank loan but many banks will be unwilling to loan the sums of money necessary if land owners do not have proven purchasers for the energy they intend to produce.
By working with a specialist renewable energy investment fund called Ventus, Geotrupes can offer long-term contracts to purchase the energy.
That helps the projects get off the ground and creates a market for Geotrupes because it can then sell on the power to larger companies which are keen to buy the product but less keen to deal with a growing number of minor energy producers.
Now that Mr Dunning and Mr Turner have secured their first deal they are confident it will lead to many more.
"It's a major deal and it's a major success for us. It's proved our model," said Mr Dunning. "I think there's always a difference about talking about something as a concept and talking about something you've done.
"It's a very, very active market at the moment, everybody is looking at renewables."
Construction on the three-turbine Ransonmoor wind farm is due to start next month, with a planned commissioning date of March 2007. It will generate enough electricity to power 3,350 homes