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Finance lined up for largest Israeli wind farm on Golan Heights

Enlight signs letter of intent with bank over Spirit of Genesis project of 190MW

Developer Enlight has lined up financing for the largest wind farm on Israeli territory, and said it is in advanced talks with a turbine supplier for the project.

The Israeli renewables group has signed a letter of intent over 1.1bn shekels ($307m) of finance with Bank Hapoalim over the 190MW Spirit of Genesis project on the Golan Heights, and a smaller 30MW wind farm elsewhere in Israel, the company said in a statement to the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange.

Spirit of Genesis has faced delays securing government permits and court challenges from conservationists, who claim bird populations would suffer.

A spokesman for Enlight told Recharge it is confident the bird dispute has been resolved, and that the government will find a solution to the permitting issues with the ministries of defence and finance.

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The developer hopes to start work on Spirit of Genesis in the next 12 months, as long as the outstanding permits are secured.

If it proceeds as planned, the project would easily outstrip the 96MW Emek Habacha project, for which Enlight already has a full docket of permits and is advancing on the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights with the planned use of GE turbines.

The Enlight spokesman said the company is in “the final stages of negotiations” with a turbine supplier over Spirit of Genesis, without giving further details. The project would be eligible for a 20-year feed-in tariff.

Israel has just a handful of small wind projects in place, but is targeting significant development on the Golan Heights and elsewhere as part of a renewable energy drive that also encompasses PV and concentrating solar power.

As well as its Israeli projects, Enlight has projects underway or completed in Croatia, Serbia and Ireland, and in May this year bought a 113MW development in Sweden.

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