Mott MacDonald supports financing of US$100 million Mongolian wind farm

Construction is underway on Mongolia’s first wind power scheme which is being developed at Salkhit Uul, 75km from Ulaanbaatar in Mongolia. Mott MacDonald supported the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and FMO as lender’s technical advisor on the scheme which is being developed by Newcom LLC, a Mongolian investment company.

The US$100 million onshore wind farm is the country’s first independently developed power project and is the first project of any type within Mongolia to be financed by international project finance. It will comprise of 31 General Electric 1.6 XLE wind turbine generators giving a total capacity of 49.6MW. The clean power generated by this wind farm will service customers connected to the Mongolian central grid.

It is hoped that the wind farm will promote private sector involvement in the country’s energy sector through the development of a green energy power source. The project will also help reduce the impact of power generation in Ulaanbaatar, which is one of the world’s most polluted cities.

Mott MacDonald’s project director Clare Rhodes-James said: “This is a particularly challenging project as the Mongolian environment is quite extreme, with winter temperatures dropping to -50°C and summer temperatures rising to 50°C, while there can also be large diurnal temperature variations. The project is also the first renewable power project to connect to the Mongolian grid, and represents an exciting challenge to the grid operator.”

Marc Buiting, senior investment officer at FMO added: “Mott MacDonald is one of the few engineering firms to fully understand how to analyse and report on bankability issues, as demonstrated on the Salkhit project. They also displayed a very welcome open attitude on areas of uncommon ground for any participant involved in the project, such as the cold -weather conditions and their impact on technology and construction management.”

Mott MacDonald is monitoring construction of the wind farm which is scheduled to finish by the end of 2012. The consultancy will continue to provide operations monitoring support for up to three years following completion.

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