Finavera Renewables CEO Jason Bak said, "This proposed joint venture illustrates our strategy of entering into partnerships with proven industry leaders at various points on the development curve. By working with quality partners on a diversified asset base, Finavera continues to create significant value which is consistently being recognized by industry partners. This milestone is evidence of our company’s ability to initiate project development, prove the wind resource, and build the commercial foundation by securing grid connection and land access. Our goal is to replicate this process in order to fund the expansion of our project pipeline and build long term value for shareholders."
The Heads of Terms includes a provision for a due diligence period of approximately six weeks. At the end of the due diligence period, and upon signing of a definitive partnership agreement, the Company will provide further details on its provisions. For commercial confidentiality reasons, the identity of the potential JV partner cannot be disclosed at this time.
Cloosh Valley Wind Project
The wind power project has nameplate capacity of up to 105 MW with average wind speed estimated at 8.9m/s at 65 m hub height and has received a Gate 3 Node Assignment from Eirgrid. A Fixed Feed in Tariff is underwritten by the Government of Ireland and provides a base level for a PPA negotiated with a utility scale offtaker.
The Company is currently engaged in discussions with several major turbine suppliers, three of whom are in the process of completing detailed site assessments and turbine suitability analyses. Project engineering is ongoing as part of preparing the project for re-application for planning permission. On completion of the current wind resource analysis, geotechnical surveys and construction assessments will be completed on-site to ensure the proposed turbine layout is achievable.
Wind energy is currently the world’s fastest growing energy business. Governments in Ireland and Canada are committed to expanding the role of wind as a source of power to meet renewable energy targets.
So what is Finavera Renewables doing to capitalize on this growth market?
Wind Energy: Irish Projects
In Ireland, we are developing two wind power projects totaling 175 MW. Ireland is renowned for consistent high speed winds year round, and the Irish government recognizes the potential to harness that power. The government’s Renewables Directive requires 15% renewable energy by 2010. With only 3% currently installed, there exists a substantial opportunity for suppliers of renewable energy.
Finavera Renewables is developing two wind power projects sites in Ireland: Cloosh Valley in County Galway, and Maghera in County Clare. A strong wind resource and government support for wind power makes Ireland a excellent region to develop wind projects.
Finavera Renewables has engaged a consultant to undertake and Environmental Impact Study and Planning Permission Application for the Cloosh Valley project. Subsequent to the completion of Cloosh Valley, studies will commence for the Maghera project. If the planning permission is approved, Finavera Renewables plans to implement a meteorological tower installation program which will see at least one meteorological tower installed on the Cloosh Valley site. Data collection and analysis will commence immediately after tower installation is complete.
Wind Energy: Canadian Projects
In Canada, we are developing several potential wind power project sites. Wind energy in Canada has seen an annual average growth of 35% between 2000 and 2005, with an expected growth of 70% in 2006. But with only 1049 MW of installed capacity (CANWEA, June 2006), there is substantial room for further installations.
Finavera Renewables has focused its Canadian wind activities in three regions: the Peace and Cascades regions of British Columbia, and Alberta. All areas have a historically strong wind resource, making them extremely attractive for wind development.
In the Peace Region, Finavera Renewables has received twelve Crown land permit approvals. Approvals have also been granted for several Licenses of Occupation for the purpose of installing meteorological towers. Tower installation is complete at five sites, and data collection and analysis will continue until the fall of 2007.
In the Cascades Region, Finavera Renewables has received Investigative Use Permits for three sites.
In Aberta, Finavera Renewables has purchased the 150 MW Three Hills Wind Power Project. The project consists of two 75 MW phases of wind power over 16,000 acres of land. The first phase, Ghost Pine, has received a grid connection offer from AESO under Alberta’s self-imposed 900 MW energy cap: the project is fifth on the list of firm capacity offered by AESO. Ghost Pine is at an advanced stage with construction planned to start in 2008 and commercial operations envisaged to commence in 2009.
Environmental consultants have been engaged to lead the projects through the provincial Environmental Assessment process. This process will address social, economic, and environmental issues. It will also address the concerns of local, provincial, and federal government agencies, along with First Nations and the public.
About Finavera Renewables Inc. (www.finavera.com)
Finavera Renewables Inc. is dedicated to the development of renewable energy resources and technologies. The Company’s objective is to become a major renewable and green energy producer by developing and operating its assets in the wind sector. Finavera Renewables is developing wind energy projects in Canada and Ireland. In British Columbia, Canada, projects totaling 293 MW have been bid into the 2008 BC Hydro Clean Power Call. In Alberta, one 75 MW project is being developed. In Ireland, two pre-construction wind projects are under development with a potential capacity of 175MW. Data collection and environmental studies have been continuing at a number of sites in both countries.