Mynydd y Gwair Wind Farm

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RWE Innogy UK is submitting a Common Land application to the Welsh Government on Thursday 31 October, in relation to the Mynydd y Gwair Wind Farm project. You can view our latest project update here. (PDF | 1.8 MB)

Introduction

RWE Innogy UK (formerly RWE npower renewables) has submitted an application to the City and County of Swansea Council for the proposed Mynydd y Gwair Wind Farm, which is located on Common Land around 15 kilometres (9 miles) north of Swansea, South Wales.

The site is located within the administrative boundary of The City and County of Swansea and within one of the Strategic Search Areas (Area E) identified by the Welsh Assembly Government as being most suitable for large-scale wind farm development within its Technical Advice Note 8 (TAN8).

The planning application proposes the installation of 16 turbines with a capacity of up to 48 megawatts (MW).  The project could potentiallyproduce enough renewable electricity to meet the average annual electricity consumption of approximately 24,700 homes1.  We believe this would make an important contribution to the efforts in Wales to tackle climate change and improve the security of our energy supply making a key contribution to Welsh Assembly Government’s low carbon energy strategy. The project also offers the potential to generate short and medium term contract opportunities for local civil engineering companies at the construction stage. 

The revised application follows a previous planning submission in 2008 for a larger 19 turbine scheme which was considered at public inquiry. The Welsh Ministers decision and planning inspectors report, whilst refusing the application, set out what needed to be done to make the wind farm more acceptable. These changes have now been made within the revised application. Three turbines have been removed from the design in direct response to concerns over an impact on an area of peat, together with some minor realignment of access tracks.

Zoom We have also undertaken additional studies which provide more detail on the environmental issues raised through the consultation process. The results of our environmental assessments have been incorporated into an environmental statement, which, along with a non-technical summary will be submitted with the planning application.

Once the planning application has been validated by the City and County of Swansea Council, the Council will undertake a round of formal consultation whereby members of the public will be invited to comment on the proposal.

Members of the public may write to the City and County of Swansea Council at the following address:

City and County of Swansea 
Civic Centre,
Oystermouth Road,
Swansea.
SA1 3SN.
Tel: 01792 636000

Please clearly reference ‘Mynydd y Gwair Wind Farm’ to ensure your comments are submitted for the correct planning application to the council.

Latest news

Find out about the latest project news.

New Planning Application for Mynydd y Gwair Wind Farm submitted

Energy firm RWE npower renewables (RWE NRL)  have  submitted new plans to the City and County of Swansea council for a wind farm at  Mynydd y Gwair ,  situated approximately nine miles to the North of north of Swansea.

The planning application proposes the installation of 16 turbines with a capacity of up to 48 megawatts (MW), which could potentiallyproduce enough renewable electricity to meet the average annual electricity consumption of approximately 24,700 homes1. 

The application follows a previous planning application submission in 2008 for a larger 19 turbine scheme which was considered at public inquiry. While rejecting the initial application, the subsequent Welsh Government Ministerial decision, based on the planning inspectors findings, highlighted areas where amendments to the project could make the application more acceptable.

Gwenllian Elias, Project Developer at RWE NRL said: “All the way through the design and public engagement process for Mynydd y Gwair, we have gone to great lengths to listen to and act on the feedback we’ve had from all parties and as a consequence we’ve made changes to the original application. Three of the turbines have been removed from the design in direct response to concerns over an area of peat, together with some minor realignment of access track.

“As part of the considerations for Mynydd y Gwair Wind Farm development, RWE NRL have also carried out an economic study into the potential value of the project to the local economy. The study2 by economic development consultancy Regeneris, estimates that the construction of the wind farm could potentially generate up to £12 million in Wales, with £8.5 million of this being invested in South and West Wales.”

The RWE NRL community investment fund will also deliver a range of community and environmental improvements to help ensure tangible, long-term benefits result from the company’s presence in the area. The fund is based on a payment of £5,000 per MW per year. Based on an installed capacity of up to 48MW, this could deliver a fund of up to £240,000 per year throughout the operational life of the wind farm.

Miss Elias continues: “RWE NRL has a long-term commitment to Swansea and the surrounding area. Subject to gaining consent for the Mynydd y Gwair Wind Farm, RWE NRL would offer a community investment package that would be delivered annually to create a valuable, long term and reliable source of income for the local community.

“We would hope to support a range of projects with this fund including groups and events relating to sport, education and local tourism. We welcome further enquiries from community groups and organisations who would like to discuss opportunities for RWE NRL to get involved with their projects.”

Following submission of the proposals, the City and County of Swansea Council will  register the application and provide a planning reference number. It will also conduct a consultation exercise, inviting the public to comment on the proposals. More information about the consultation process will be advertised locally by the local authority.

The full suite of documents forming the application will be available to view at the City and County of Swansea Council Planning Department, Civic centre, Oystermouth Road, Swansea, SA1 3SN.

 

Footnotes

1Energy predicted to be generated by the proposal is derived using wind speeds monitored in the local area and correlating to a Meteorological Office station providing longer term data. This enables a calculation to be made to estimate the average annual energy production for the site based on 16  turbines each of rated capacity of up to  3MW. The energy capture predicted and hence derived homes equivalent or emissions savings figures may change as further data are gathered.


An equivalent home supplied is based on an annual electricity consumption per home of 4700 kWh. This figure is supported by recent domestic electricity consumption data available from The Digest of UK Energy Statistics and household estimates and projections from the UK Statistics Authority.

2 The Regeneris report contains research on economic issues associated with the construction and operation of the Mynydd y Gwair Wind Farm. Values are measured as Gross Value Added - a measure of the value of goods and services that an economy produces. During construction, the project could also potentially generate 104 Full Time Equivalent (FTE) jobs each year in Wales. The full Regeneris report is one of the key supporting documents included within the application and the Environmental Statement.

Mynydd y Gwair

Footnote
1Energy predicted to be generated by the proposal is derived using wind speeds monitored in the local area and correlating to a Meteorological Office station providing longer term data. This enables a calculation to be made to estimate the average annual energy production for the site based on 16  turbines each of rated capacity of up to  3MW. The energy capture predicted and hence derived homes equivalent or emissions savings figures may change as further data are gathered.


An equivalent home supplied is based on an annual electricity consumption per home of 4700 kWh. This figure is supported by recent domestic electricity consumption data available from The Digest of UK Energy Statistics and household estimates and projections from the UK Statistics Authority.