EBRD To Extend up to 90 Mln Euro to U.S. AES for Wind Power Project in Bulgaria
SOFIA (Bulgaria), May 23 (SeeNews) – The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) said late on Thursday it will extend up to 90 million euro ($141.4 million) to support a wind power generation project of a joint venture of U.S. AES in Bulgaria.
EBRD will extend long-term debt financing for the Kaliakra wind farm, which has an estimated total cost of around 258 million euro and will help the country raise the share of renewable sources in its electricity consumption, the bank said in a statement. The loan is to be approved in September.
AES Geo Energy, a joint venture of AES and its Bulgarian partner GeoPower, plans to build and operate the 156-megawatt (MW) wind farm located in Kavarna region, near the northeast Black Sea coast. The wind park will consist of 52 wind turbines of the Vestas V90 3MW model and would generate more than 450 gigawatthours (GWh) per year. No timeframe for the project was available.
AES Geo Energy said in 2007 it planned to complete the project in 2009.
The wind farm will help the European Union member state in achieving a 11% target of sourcing its electricity consumption from renewable sources by 2010 and 16% by 2020 under agreements with the bloc, EBRD said. At present, only a few wind turbines operate in the ex-communist state.
Bulgaria's energy regulator in 2006 significantly raised the preferential prices for electricity produced by domestic wind farms in order to enhance green energy generation.
The current purchase price is 175 levs ($140.6/89.5 euro) per MWh of electricity generated by wind-propelled turbines that operate more than 2,200 hours a year and 156 levs per MWh for generators running less than 2,200 hours annually. The quoted prices include no Value Added Tax and are almost three times higher than the price of energy generated by coal-fired plants.
AES (www.aes.com), one of the world's largest power companies, has operations in 28 countries worldwide and launched in June 2006 the construction of a 1.02 billion euro 670-megawatt coal-fired power plant at the state-owned Maritsa East coal-mining and electricity-producing complex, which generates some 30% of the country's electricity output.