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New Future for small and medium size wind turbines in Belgium!

‘More wind turbines in a shorter period of time’, those were the main principles in the ‘Windpower 2020’ wind plan by Flemish Minister of Energy Bart Tommelein and his colleague Joke Schauvliege from the department ‘Environment (CD&V)’. Steps have already been taken to remove a number of obstacles for the construction of wind turbines. Minister Tommelein has introduced a ‘support-system’ to encourage the construction of small and medium sized wind turbines.

Small wind turbines are turbines with a hub-height of up to 15 meters. Medium sized wind turbines start with a hub-height of 15 meters up to a capacity of 300 kilowatts. For small business companies, farms and hospitals, small and medium sized wind turbines are an excellent way to produce their own renewable ‘green’ energy. Initiators receive investment support at the start of their project which can be as high as 70 percent of the investment.

The first call has delivered 14 new wind turbine projects. The call ran from December 3, 2018 to January 24, 2019 and worked with a comparative bidding procedure. Projects that did not make it were either too expensive or did not meet the conditions. The selected projects will only receive investment support so afterwards there will no longer be any production aid in the form of green certificates during the operational period of the wind turbine.

Flemish Minister for Energy Lydia Peeters: “The Flemish energy policy focuses on renewable sources. As wind energy can also be generated at a lower altitude, we worked out a specific call for small and medium-sized wind turbines. The selected projects can therefore count on investment support to realize their project. ”

26 projects were received in two months; 18 of these projects were declared admissible and 14 were finally selected. It concerns agricultural and waste processing companies and even includes a single brewery. The majority of applicants, no fewer than 12, come from West Flanders. 2 projects will be realized in the province of Antwerp. The projects were assessed and ranked according to the intended return in proportion to the aid applied for. Projects that were too expensive were therefore not eligible.

So far, this new call has been an unlikely big success. It shows that more and more organizations and small and medium sized companies are seeing the possibilities that a small or medium-sized wind turbine offers them. Thanks to investment support, many new wind turbines can be built and the Flemish government avoids over subsidization.

The second call of 2019 ran from March 28 until May 30 2019 and there are serious plans for a third call in 2019 as well. Flemish companies that are interested in a mid-sized wind turbine between 10 and 300 kilowatts can have a look at our website www.windenergysolutions.nl or contact our Project Manager Sjoerd Overpelt for more information, advice and support for a possible wind project.

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