Belarus is one step closer to building its largest wind farm and reaching its 2030 renewables target. Turkey-based construction company GURISH (Gurish Construction & Engineering Co. Inc.) was selected for investing into the construction of a 25 MW wind farm near the village of Veleshkovichi in Liozno district of Vitebsk region in Belarus. The company is a world-known developer of green engineering solutions.
The agreement on the sale of the pre-investment asset was signed between Belarus and the Turkish company on 30 August 2019 following its clearance from the side of the Belarusian Ministry of Antimonopoly Regulation and Trade. The estimated total investments into the new wind energy farm will be around US$ 40 million.
“Thanks to the project, direct investments come to Belarus that are aimed at development of green economy and renewable energy. Wind farms make our environment cleaner and contribute to improving the lives of local people,” said Alexander Korbut, the Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Environmental Protection of Belarus
Work is set to begin in 2020 after the investor will develop the detailed project documentation. Once completed, Veleshkovichi wind farm will be Belarus’ largest wind energy producer supplying green energy to over 20,000 households in the area.
The operation of the wind farm over the next 20 years is expected to offset over 500 thousand tonnes of CO2. Five new full-time jobs will be created to support the operation and maintenance of the facility. The construction of the farm will also provide jobs to the local construction organizations and equipment suppliers.
The global energy demand is expected to increase by 30% within the next two decades. The total share of renewable energy in the global power sector is expected to increase to 44% by 2050 mostly from growth in the solar, wind and hydro energy.
The current growth rates of renewables in Belarus are slow. At the beginning of 2019 the share of renewables on the Belarusian energy market is 6.2%. Currently 96 wind turbines with total capacity of 100.95 MW are operating across the country.
The international technical assistance project “Removing Barriers to the Development of Wind Power in the Republic of Belarus” is implemented by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Protection of the Republic of Belarus with the support of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the Global Environment Facility (GEF).
One of the main objectives of the project is to de-risk the future investment to the wind power development and to prepare pre-investment assets for the construction of wind farms in the Republic of Belarus. To attract investment in Belarusian wind energy, the project selects sites for future wind farms, obtains the necessary permits, draws up the required technical specifications and qualification criteria, and undertakes feasibility study and wind measurements.
The prerequisites for the implementation of the projects for the construction of wind farms include quotas (the installed capacity of the power station that is allowed to develop for further commercial sale of electricity to the grid) and a coefficient to the base tariff that is used to determine the price of the electricity produced by such a power station and sold to the grid.