The joint team of Fortum and Uniper for wind and solar businesses in Europe is launching its first project. Fortum has made an investment decision to start the construction of the 380 MW Pjelax-Böle and Kristinestad Norr wind parks in Närpes and in Kristinestad, Finland respectively, in partnership with the Finnish energy company Helen Ltd.
The project consists of 56 wind turbines generating approximately 1.1 TWh annually. Construction with civil works starts during January and the wind parks are expected to be fully operational at the latest in the second quarter of 2024. Fortum will retain a 60% majority and Helen a 40% ownership in the project and the investment will be consolidated on Fortum’s balance sheet. The total capital expenditure of the projects is approximately €360 million, of which Fortum’s share is €216 m.
Fortum and Helen have also signed a long-term power purchase agreement according to which Helen is to purchase approximately half the power generated by the Pjelax-Böle and Kristinestad Norr wind parks.
As announced in December 2020, onshore wind and solar is one of the three strategic co-operation areas for Fortum and Uniper. The aim of this co-operation is to ensure focused and effective implementation of the Group strategy, to create more value and to optimise exploration of growth opportunities. The wind and solar organisation is under the leadership of Uniper, and its aim is to build between 1.5 and 2 GW of new capacity in the most attractive European markets by 2025. Fortum’s and Uniper’s two other strategic co-operation areas are Nordic hydro and physical trading optimisation and hydrogen development.
“This investment will triple Helen’s wind power production. Helen’s target is carbon-neutral energy production in 2030. Wind power is one of a number of means of achieving the carbon neutrality target in a profitable way," commented Helen’s CEO Juha-Pekka Weckström. "This is our first joint renewables project with Fortum and it marks a major milestone."