Feb 13 (Renewables Now) - A court ruling in Thailand blocking wind turbine installation on agricultural land in Chaiyaphum has left project developers unsure what to do with their own projects on Sor Por Kor land.
Earlier this month the Supreme Administrative Court ruled that installing wind turbines on Sor Por Kor land qualified as misuse, because the land is designated for agriculture. Thailand-based Gunkul Engineering Pcl (BKK:GUNKUL) is thus freezing a 60 MW-90 MW project in Saraburi, the Bangkok Post said Friday, citing a company official.
According to the report (http://www.bangkokpost.com/business/news/1195997/gunkul-holds-off-project-on-disputed-land), the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) has suspended approvals for power purchase agreements (PPAs) of 700 MW of wind projects on Sor Por Kor land, mostly in Nakhon Ratchasima and Chaiyaphum.
Gunkul CEO Sopacha Dhumrongpiyawut was cited as saying that the agricultural land issue would not harm its 1-GW renewables goal in its five-year plan. Last week, the firm has signed a loan agreement of THB 3.11 billion (USD 89m/EUR 83.6m) with Siam Commercial Bank for a 50-MW wind power project in Nakorn Ratchasima. It will be installed on land with the “normal multi-purpose land certificate”.
(THB 100 = USD 2.86/EUR 2.69)