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01 November 2005

Airtricity – a Eu10 million start-up six years ago – has announced a £2.5 billion investment plan for US and UK wind markets. Andreas Campomar asks Fintan Whelan, Airtricity corporate finance manager, where the funding will come from?

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In late September the European Parliament voted to adopt recommendations made in a report on the increased deployment of renewable energy sources. The report calls for a mandatory 20% of all electricity generation to come from renewables by 2020, rising from a meagre 6% in 2001, which could even increase to 25% under the condition that increased renewables efficiency measures are taken.

Few have taken more advantage of the current climate than the Irish energy company Airtricity. In the six years since start-up – with a Eu10 million (£6.8 million) bank loan to build an 18-turbine wind farm in Donegal – Airtricity has grown into one of Europe's leading fully integrated renewable energy companies. With £800 million slated for wind farms in Scotland and a further £800 million committed for the Greater Gabbard project in the Thames estuary, company growth shows no signs of abating.

However, if Airtricity is to...

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