Irish energy company ESB and Equinor will jointly develop a 1.4 GW Moneypoint floating offshore wind farm off the West Coast of Ireland.
The Moneypoint wind farm will be developed off the coast of Counties Clare and Kerry in two phases. Once complete, the wind farm will be capable of powering more than 1.6 million homes in Ireland, ESB said.
Subject to the appropriate consents being granted, the wind farm is expected to be in production within the next decade.
Green Atlantic @ Moneypoint
The wind farm is part of ESB’s plan to transform the Moneypoint power station in County Clare into a green energy hub. At its peak, Moneypoint produced 25 per cent of Ireland’s electricity requirements, burning primarily coal.
As part of the Green Atlantic @ Moneypoint project, the site will be transformed into, among other things, a construction and assembly centre for floating wind turbines.
A deep-water port already exists at the site, making it an ideal staging ground for the construction of the wind farm, ESB said.
In the longer term, the development of Moneypoint is expected to support wider plans of Shannon Foynes port, and working with local stakeholders, help make the Shannon Estuary a focal point for the offshore wind industry in Europe.
ESB’s plans also include investment in a green hydrogen production, storage, and generation facility at Moneypoint towards the end of the decade.
Green Atlantic @ Moneypoint is a key part of ESB’s Brighter Future strategy.
Pat O’Doherty, ESB Chief Executive, said: ”ESB’s Brighter Future strategy is anchored in our ambition to lead the transition to a low-carbon energy future, powered by clean electricity. The transformation of Moneypoint into a green energy hub will be a major step in achieving this and will bring huge benefits to the Mid-West and beyond. We have long signaled our intention to cease burning coal at Moneypoint. Today we are unveiling plans for a reimagined Moneypoint, which will not only create hundreds of jobs, but will also help Ireland to meet its climate targets and maintain secure supplies of electricity into the future.”
ESB has already commenced work on transforming Moneypoint into a green energy hub, breaking ground on a new EUR 50 million Sustainable System Support facility in the coming week. This Synchronous Compensator will be the largest of its kind in the world, ESB said.
The new plant will provide a range of electrical services to the electricity grid which would previously have been supplied by thermal fired power stations. Its operation will enable higher volumes of renewables on the system.
”Today’s announcement is a significant milestone in ESB’s low-carbon journey, cementing our commitment to transforming our generation portfolio and ongoing investment in renewable energy technologies,” Jim Dollard, ESB Executive Director, Generation and Trading, said.
”Moneypoint has played a critical role in the country’s energy supply for almost 40 years. We are proud that it will continue to have a crucial role in Ireland’s energy future with many benefits for the local community and wider society.”