Axpo subsidiary Volkswind puts new windfarm into operation in France


09.06. 2017 - Volkswind GmbH, a 100-per cent subsidiary of Axpo, has put the new Massay 2 wind farm into operation in France. The wind farm includes 7 turbines with an output of 3.3 MW each, and is located 100 kilometres south of Orleans. The rotor blades on the individual wind turbines reach a height of 175 metres. Massay 2 is one of the highest wind power plants in France and generates power for some 20,000 people.

The Massay 2 wind farm, which was inaugurated in a small ceremony on Friday, 9 June 2017, is located near the community of Vierzon (Centre/Val de Loire region). The wind farm will produce an annual average power volume of about 52.4 GWh, which is sufficient to supply some 20,000 people with electricity. The 7 wind turbines have a hub height of 119 metres, and the Vestas V112 turbine rotor blades measure 56 metres. The plant with a total height of 175 metres is the tallest wind power plant in the Centre region.

Increased construction of wind energy plants

In addition to Massay 2, the Axpo subsidiary Volkswind also put two other wind farms (Availles Thouarsais Irais and Trans-Courcité) into operation this year. Construction of three more wind farms (Lichères-Pres-Aigremont, Périgné and Elarg. Louville) will be completed by the end of 2017. All six facilities with a total of 35 wind turbines are located in Central and Western France and have an installed capacity of 88 MW.

As a comparison: Switzerland currently has 37 wind power plants. The largest wind farm is located on the Mont Croisin in the Bernese Jura near St. Imier. The farm includes 16 turbines with a total capacity of 37.2 MW.

Christoph Sutter, Head of New Energies at Axpo: "Thanks to Volkswind, we have been able to establish ourselves in a market that we were previously not present in, and that gives us the opportunity to achieve higher value added from the business with renewable energies." In addition to the operation of plants and power marketing, the Axpo business model includes development, construction and the sale of wind farms, as well as their management.

Axpo already has wind farms in Germany, France, Italy and Spain with a total capacity of over 400 MW in its portfolio. With the commissioning of Massay 2, Axpo is reinforcing its position as the largest producer of renewable energy with domestic hydropower, biomass and wind at the best locations in Europe.

Wind energy as an important future market

Wind energy is an important future market for Axpo. Hence, the company has been investing in renewable projects. In September 2015, the Global Tech I wind farm located off the German North Sea coast went into operation. The farm covers an area of 41 km2 and includes 80 wind turbines with a capacity of 5 megawatts each. Axpo holds an interest of 24.1 per cent in this offshore wind farm.

With the acquisition of Volkswind GmbH, a leading wind farm developer, in the fall of 2015, Axpo made a further step forward. The Axpo subsidiary with headquarters in Ganderkesee, Germany has already built over 60 wind farms with a capacity of 700 MW in Germany and France. Additional plants with a capacity of some 3000 MW are under construction or in the development phase.

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