First non-recourse financing by China Development Bank for Western wind project
Global renewable energy developer Mainstream Renewable Power has purchased 23 of Goldwind’s GW87 1.5 MW wind turbines ahead of constructing its first wind farm in Chile in Q2 2012. The 34.5MW Negrete Cuel Wind Farm is located in central Chile and will be the country’s sixth utility-scale wind farm.
The wind farm, which is 100% owned by Mainstream, is expected to be the first non-recourse financing from the China Development Bank to benefit a wind project fully owned by a Western buyer.
Mainstream has been developing 900MW of wind and solar projects in Chile since 2009. This is the second collaboration between Mainstream and Beijing based Goldwind, China’s largest turbine manufacturer, having successfully won a bid in Illinois, USA last December for the 109.5MW Shady Oaks project which is now in construction. Earlier this week Mainstream was awarded 138MW of wind and 100MW of solar PV projects by the South African Government which are due to commence construction in the second half of next year.
Commenting on the announcement, Mainstream’s Chief Executive Eddie O’Connor said: “Our goal is to deliver low cost, high quality projects and by partnering with Goldwind and the China Development Bank we can achieve this. We’re developing over 15,000MW of projects across four continents and working with Chinese partners is very much central to our strategy. Earlier this year we established our office in Beijing and we’re fully committed to these relationships for the long-term .”
Goldwind USA CEO, Tim Rosenzweig commented, “Just as all of us at Goldwind were pleased to establish the company as an early player in Ecuador, we are excited to bring our unique competitive advantages to gain an early foothold in Chile. South America is a key strategic market for Goldwind’s international ambitions and we are eager to work with partners like Mainstream to continue our momentum.”
This is Goldwind’s second South American project, having recently announced it will build the 15MW Villonaco project in Ecuador – the country’s first major wind farm. Goldwind’s GW87 1.5 MW Permanent Magnet Direct Drive turbines are ideally suited for maximum energy output in the extreme temperature ranges and low-speed wind regime of the Negrete Cuel region.
Jose Ignacio Escobar, Mainstream’s General Manager for Chile commented: “Mainstream together with Goldwind will demonstrate that wind energy is a competitive, reliable and sustainable source of energy for Chile’s growing demand, helping our country’s goal to become the first Latin American developed country by 2020. Goldwind’s state of the art, permanent magnet, gearless technology will also support grid stability.”
The project will create between 150 and 250 Chilean construction, transportation and manufacturing jobs. As part of its efforts in Chile, Mainstream established a local development facility in Santiago, which will serve as a base of operations for a variety of projects including the Negrete Cuel project.