Canadian Pension-Backed Group Plans Wind Power for PrisonSally Bakewell
Partnerships for Renewables, backed with 100 million pounds ($155 million) of Canadian pension and infrastructure-fund money, will build as much as 500 megawatts of wind power at land owned by U.K. prisons and other bodies.
The developer will today start its first turbines at the Standford Hill prison in Kent, southern England, Chief Executive Officer Stephen Ainger said. It also plans about 5 megawatts for Camp Hill prison on the Isle of Wight and 15 megawatts at the Haverigg prison in Cumbria, northern England, he said by phone.
The London-based company is seeking unexploited land owned by government bodies such as the Forestry Commission and Coal Authority for renewable energy projects the U.K. is promoting to curb emissions linked to climate change. The state is estimated to own 10 percent to 12 percent of U.K. land, according to PfR.
The company received funding from Canada’s OPSEU Pension Trust and London-based Infrared Capital Partners Ltd., which each own a third of the company, to develop wind farms, Ainger said. The Carbon Trust, a London-based adviser to government and business on reducing emissions, owns the remaining shares.
“Our shareholders see a great future for renewables in the U.K.,” Ainger said. “They see, from an energy security point of view and for the U.K.’s renewables targets, it’s important and have been willing to back that government vision.”
A portion of the revenue from Standford Hill will go to the Ministry of Justice, responsible for prisons, he said. The company also plans to submit bids to supply power directly to prisons and has set up a community benefit fund, he said.