Power purchase partnership optimises windfarm, profits to support local community initiatives.
Leading onshore windfarm developer Community Windpower Ltd operates six windfarms across Scotland.
To secure funding for each windfarm, the company needs to set up reliable power purchase agreements (PPAs) with a proven, experienced credit-worthy off taker.
A PPA provides Community Windpower with payment assurances for every kWh of electricity generated by each plant. It gives banks and other funders the confidence that they will achieve a long-term return on their investment.
ENGIE first started working with Community Windpower when agreeing to a PPA for their first project, Aikengall. Since then the relationship has developed and we now have the PPA for three later wind farms within the portfolio.
In 2012 Community Windpower awarded a second PPA to ENGIE for its Millour Hill Community Windfarm. Similar flexible contract arrangements were chosen, helping the company to achieve the best prices for the 65GWh annual output from this site.
The company’s most recent windfarm development is Alkengall II. This vast 19-turbine site forms an extension to the existing Aikengall windfarm, but operates as a separate entity with its own grid connection. The plant generates 250GWh of electricity per year — enough to supply more than 42,000 homes. The PPA for this new facility was awarded through a competitive tender process, with ENGIE emerging as the preferred partner.
Due to the significantly greater output from Aikengall II, combined with a change in market conditions, Community Windpower opted for an index-linked export contract rather than the full flexible deals chosen previously. This ensures that market-reflective prices are received at all times for the output from Aikengall II, and limits the exposure to risk associated with more flexible contracts. To provide an assured return on investment for the project’s funders, ENGIE included a ‘floor price’ in the PPA, which guarantees a minimum rate should market prices fall significantly. In addition, ENGIE will purchase all ROC certificates generated by Aikengall II, which will help the energy supplier to meet it’s own sustainable sourcing commitment under the government’s Renewables Obligation. Aikengall II will make an important contribution to the Scottish Government’s target of having 100% of Scotland’s electricity generated from renewable sources by 2020.
“These are the basic commercial requirements that any offtaker has to meet but more than that, ENGIE offered a flexible contract type that precisely met our needs at the time. “It enables us to work closely with the company’s trading desk to monitor the market and secure prices for our future output at the most favourable rates.”
Ray Ball, Finance Director, Community Windpower
“We are building a reputation as a reliable, knowledgeable partner in the power purchase arena, particularly in the renewable generation sector. “We are delighted to be supporting Community Windpower through our long term PPAs, and we look forward to building on this relationship in the years ahead.”
Ben Finnerty, Sales Director, ENGIE
Aikengall IIa Community Wind Farm is located on the border of East Lothian and Scottish Borders, approximately 8 miles south of Dunbar and 4 miles south of Innerwick. The wind farm will form an extension of Community Windpower’s operational Aikengall and Aikengall II Community Wind Farms.
ENGIE were awarded the PPA following another open tender process. It allows a very wide range of trading capability to ensure that Community Wind can capture the best market prices.
“We had built up a strong working relationship with ENGIE, based on its attentive service, proactive team and reliable contract administration. “But the tender process for Aikengall II was essential to ensure the company’s export contracts were still ‘on-market’ and offered the best deal for the output from our newest and largest windfarm.”
Rod Wood, Managing Director, Community Windpower
Aikengall IIa Community Wind Farm became operational in September 2021 and is now at full capacity.
- 19 x 145m to tip Siemens wind turbines
- Generating capacity of 81.7MW
- 70,000 homes powered
- 121,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide displaced per annum