A new £13.4million wind farm near Ballymoney will make a huge contribution to both green energy production and the local community, the Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens has said.
The Cloonty project is Gaelectric’s fouth operating wind farm in Northern Ireland. It comprises four Enercon wind turbines, with a maximum blade tip height of 110 metres. It will generate sufficient green renewable power to meet the electricity demand of over 5000 homes on an annual basis.
Gaelelectric says that, to date, the project has created over 20 full time and part time jobs during development and construction.
The Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, Alderman Maura Hickey commented: “This wind farm will greatly enhance the amount of green energy already produced in our region. It will also have a positive economic impact through job creation and the Community Benefit Fund, which will provide financial support to local community and voluntary groups. I commend Gaelectric for this, and I would encourage all eligible groups in the area to take advantage of this funding.”
Patrick McClughan, Head of Corporate Affairs for Gaelectric Developments Ltd, said:
Mr McClughan adds: “It is important to Gaelectric that local communities close to the Cloonty wind farm have the opportunity to share in the social and economic benefits of this renewable energy development.
“To ensure this happens in a tangible way we have launched the Cloonty Community Benefit Fund, which has the objective of supporting local community projects within the area. Independently administered and managed on behalf of Gaelectric by the Community Foundation for Northern Ireland, the Fund will provide grant support of between £500 and £5,000 to local community and voluntary groups which are delivering projects that support community cohesion in the area. Community projects will be able to access approximately £250,000 over the 25 year lifespan of the project.”