A FIRST community wind turbine in the North East is expected to generate £4m in revenue over its 20-year lifespan.
The winning of planning permission for the turbine this week was hailed yesterday as a new way forward for wind power.
The scheme is a joint venture by Berwick Community Trust and Community Renewable Energy (CoRE), which is based in the town.
CoRE’s mission is to help communities install their own green energy projects.
The Berwick turbine will be located at the Steps of Grace, an area of land which is all that remains of a farm of the same name between the A1 and the East Coast mainline to the north of the town’s Ramparts Business Park.
The turbine, which will be 50m to hub height and 74m to blade tip, will generate sufficient energy to power around 540 homes and save more than 1,000 tonnes of carbon emissions annually. Electricity produced by the turbine will be offered for sale to local householders, factories and offices by the project’s energy service company Escore.
Half of the income will go to the trust to support its work with the Berwick community, and half will feed into further CoRE projects.
CoRE currently has planning permission for anaerobic digester systems in two communities near Carlisle, which will use mainly cow manure to produce methane to generate heat, electricity and fertiliser.
Peter Watts, chairman of Berwick Community Trust, said: “This is absolutely wonderful news. I look forward to the turbine generating money and energy for Berwick.”
Ross Weddle, managing director of CoRE, said: “If you work with communities to install turbines which produce local energy for use locally and which generates income for use locally then I can see quite a lot of communities which will be interested.”