Solar panel farm plan for Laois
A big German wind turbine and solar energy company has plans to build a major solar panel power farm in Laois.
Vento Ludens Ltd is in the process of applying to Laois County Council for permission to construct a solar energy development with a total site area of 67.6 hectares in south Laois at Kilcoran near Rathdowney.
Solar PV panels will be ground mounted on support structures. Internal access tracks, security fencing, electrical cabling and ducting, CCTV and other ancillary infrastructure, drainage, additional landscaping and habitat enhancement are included in the plan to be submitted to the council. The also plan includes two single storey, 38KV electrical substation buildings and associated infrastructure.
An initial plan was submitted to the council in October but this was ruled invalid because it was deemed incomplete.
Vento Ludens has developed wind turbine and solar panel power farms in Germany, the UK and Switzerland. It generates most of its power from the sun but has a substantial wind farm footprint. It has a small interest in hydro power.
The company opened a satellite office in Dublin in 2015. At the time it said the South East of Ireland holds great potential for solar developments due to the high solar irradiance experienced here.
"Using the Dublin office as our base the development team are currently advancing discussions with landowners, agents and suppliers in order to commence solar PV development opportunities at the earliest opportunity," it said at the time.
The statement added that its Irish move represented an exciting new venture and the company was forward to the future.