In recent years, the emphasis from governments on renewable energy sources over carbon-based energy ones has increased dramatically. This has opened up a new revenue stream for those with the knowledge and experience of relevant markets.
(PRWEB UK) 6 November 2014
Scottish developers Intelligent Land Investments (Renewable Energy) are negotiating almost £40million worth of contracts with investors from Europe and England for onshore single wind turbine developments.
Now that the uncertainty over Scotland’s future has been settled with the independence referendum decision, a number of big players in the renewables sector from outside the country have come forward with ambitions to enter into formal partnerships with the company, who are based in Hamilton, Lanarkshire.
ILI RE are an investment management company who focus on the creation of planning gain for landowners and leaseholders through renewable energy projects such as onshore wind generation and hydro projects in Scotland. They secure prime strategic sites for renewable energy installations and use their expertise to steer them through local authority planning processes. Once this is achieved and the site developed, a guaranteed revenue is created for the client through government-controlled subsidies and feed-in tariff payments, under which the power generated can be sold and channelled to the national grid.
To date, 76 planning applications on behalf of landowners and leaseholders – many of them farmers – have been consented and a significant number of other applications are at different stages within council planning procedures at the moment.
The outside investors come into the equation once the application has been granted. This is due to the fact that many landowners cannot afford the high cost of the overall development, which can run into millions of pounds and which involves the purchase of a turbine, excavation and preparation of the ground, installation of the equipment and the construction of other infrastructure and services.
With the approval of the landowner, the investor purchases the formal consent agreement from ILI RE and agrees to pay for all development costs on behalf of the landowner in return for a 90 per cent share of any subsidy and feed-in tariff payments on a long-term basis. The 10 per cent share left for the landowner still makes for an attractive financial proposition for them.
Mark Wilson, CEO of ILI RE, has revealed that five significant organisations – two from Spain and one each from England, Portugal and Germany – whose identities cannot be revealed at this stage due to reasons of commercial confidentiality, have entered the Scottish market and are looking to partner with his company.
He said: “Now that the uncertainty over Scotland’s future has been settled with the ‘No’ vote in the referendum last month, the renewables market has turned a corner, and the investors that were holding back are now committing to numerous projects in our country. I see this as a great time for Scotland, as the momentum for outside investment is really getting traction.
“We are seeing directly all the good that these turbines are bringing. Not only do they give a much-needed lifeline to the farming community, local contractors are getting the majority of the construction work, meaning significant funds are going directly to the local community. All these positives before we even consider the benefits to the environment.
“We have structured a business strategy that puts the landowner first. We understand that word of mouth has been the reason for our growth over the years and we will endeavour to see that blossom.
“Presently ILI RE are working alongside set government strategies to push the growth for single rural turbines within the feed-in tariff. This is an opportunity like no other for landowners to benefit from a government-set feed-in tariff for the next 20 years.
“We promise to do our utmost to deliver for all landowners we work with. The ethics and values in our company are paramount. We are the only company of our type in Scotland set up to specifically work with development partners. Everyone else is trying to do the whole value chain by themselves.
“We are very proud of our reputation in the farming and renewable energy community. We have created a brand that we feel people know they can trust.”
ILI RE also enter into partnerships with community support groups and charities to spread the benefits of a local renewable energy installation. It is estimated that, in the years to come, several million pounds will be shared out in this way. This figure will, of course, rise as further developments come on stream.
ILI RE have brought together some of the best minds and companies in the industry to ensure success for all involved. Their advisory board comprises energy industry executive William Landels, corporate financier Ramsay Duff, former politician and businessman turned writer and PR executive Michael Kelly, renewable energy technical expert Dr Keith Nicholson, construction industry executive Gordon Ash and land use advisor Gordon McCallum.
Mr. Wilson added: “In recent years, the emphasis from governments on renewable energy sources over traditional carbon-based energy sources has increased dramatically. This, in tum, has opened up a new, potentially lucrative, revenue stream for those with the knowledge and experience of relevant markets.
“The UK is the windiest country in Europe, so much so that we could power our country several times over using this free fuel.”
Launched in 2010, the UK Government’s Feed-in-Tariff scheme guarantees, for 20 years, a set payment in addition to the existing tariff for electricity generated by smaller scale renewable energy developments.
In April this year, however, the Department of Energy and Climate Change introduced a 20 per cent reduction in the payments for non-domestic small and medium-scale wind turbine developments – the sector into which the majority of British wind turbine manufacturers fall.
But Mr Wilson believes “small wind” is still a compelling investment opportunity for farmers and landowners looking to capitalise on their assets.
Earlier this month (October 2014), wind power supplied more electricity to the UK grid than nuclear, primarily due to strong gusts. This followed a temporary reversal in the normal flow of electricity from France to the UK, as an overall increase in generation on this side of the English Channel meant Britain could export energy to mainland Europe.
Intelligent Land Investments (Renewable Energy),
33 Bothwell Road,
Lanarkshire ML3 0AS.
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