Hot on the heels of the solar contract we covered last year to supply the Israeli Defense Force with the power of the sun, Enlight Renewable Energy (TASE: ENLT) has announced a new project. It will build and run a new wind farm on the windy Golan Heights, the site of Israel’s first wind farm, a now very outdated 10 wind turbines.
The company specializes in initiating, developing, constructing and operating clean electricity production projects from renewable energy sources. Until now, these have been in small solar development in Israel (16 small PV facilities) and last year one was announced in Italy, and this marks the company’s first foray into wind farm development.
This is a surprising move. Compared with the solar potential, Israel’s wind potential is relatively small, just 600 MW. Israel’s small population of seven million people only need 40,000 MW from all sources to supply their electricity, but it does appear that the wind potential comes close to being able to meet the modest percentage allotted to wind in Israel’s renewable policy (800 MW all told). But this wind farm will not come close to that.
Enlight expects to be able to establish about eight to 10 systems, each at between five to 10 megawatts capacity – adding up to a total of about 50 MW.
Enlight CEO Yavetz says that each individual connection cannot currently exceed these amounts, as the Golan Heights is only hooked up to the “high voltage” grid, and not the “supreme voltage” grid, although the Israel Electric Corporation is considering extending that there in the future.
“It’s a little bit difficult in this preliminary phase to estimate what exactly is the potential,” he said. “But the way we are assessing is by crossing both the wind potential that we mapped until today, together with the land areas and the electrical grid that are available in these areas.”
It will be a good start.