Wind farm will supply electricity to Dublin and Belfast stores.
Dublin, 12 August 2013: IKEA Ireland Ltd today announced that it is investing in the purchase of a new wind farm located in Carrickeeny, North-West Leitrim, from the global wind and solar company Mainstream Renewable Power. The electricity generated from the wind farm will be used to supply its Dublin and Belfast stores, becoming one of the first corporate businesses in Ireland to operate a wind farm in this way.
Construction of the wind farm has begun by Mainstream, who has been chosen to operate the plant for its 20 year life cycle, and the site is expected to be operational in 2014. The wind farm will have a capacity of 7.65 megawatts and consist of four turbines. It will have an expected annual production of 25GWh, generating the equivalent electricity for approximately 5,500 houses a year.
The IKEA Group will sell electricity generated by the wind farm to Irish energy supply company Vayu who will supply electricity to the retailer’s Dublin and Belfast stores under a 15 year contract. Vayu was recently declared as the only energy supply company to supply 100% renewable energy to its electricity Customers in Ireland in a commission for Energy Regulation report on fuel-mix and CO2 emissions.
Wind energy is a key part of IKEA Group’s sustainability strategy to produce as much renewable energy as it consumes by 2020. To get closer to that goal, the IKEA Group has set aside €1.5bn for investments in renewable energy up to 2015. The Irish acquisition will increase the total number of wind turbines that the IKEA Group has committed to own and operate to 137. The other wind farms are located in the UK, Germany, France, Poland, Denmark and Sweden.
Speaking at the announcement, Joanna Yarrow, Head of Sustainability IKEA UK and Ireland said: “Our investments in renewable energy not only help to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from our operations in Ireland, but also, together with our energy efficiency efforts, help to control our electricity costs so we can pass any benefits to our customers by continuing to offer high quality home furnishings at low prices. Companies, individuals or governments – we all have responsibility to address the resource dilemma and commit to a more sustainable future. Producing our own, affordable, renewable electricity gets us one step closer to becoming completely energy independent by 2020, while ensuring our commercial success.”
Commenting on the deal, Mainstream Renewable Power’s Chief Executive Eddie O’Connor said: “Mainstream Renewable Power is delighted to be partnering with IKEA, a true world leader in corporate sustainability. Partnering with corporations who want to own wind and solar plant is a very exciting and growing part of Mainstream’s global business. Owning wind and solar plant makes a lot of sense for them on a number of levels. As the cost of the fuel is free the more of it they have the more stability and certainty they have in relation to their energy costs in the long-term. On top of that the more forward –thinking corporations are investing in wind and solar energy as part of their sustainability strategy, and IKEA as a fantastic example of this.”
David Gascon, head of electricity at Vayu said: “IKEA’s decision to invest directly in renewable energy is a first of its kind in Ireland and has the potential to shape the energy market here in a very positive way. With our flexible approach to green energy generation, we believe our power purchase agreement with IKEA will act as a model for similar scale companies seeking sustainable solutions for managing their power requirements. This type of close collaboration is the future for electricity production in Ireland and achieving the Government’s target of 40% renewable generation by 2020.”