Western Wind secures cash grant before year-end


Western Wind states that the panels worth a total of US$12 million have been delivered and the company has taken ownership and possession of the panels, prior to the 31 December 2011 deadline, qualifying and exceeding the minimum five percent safe harbor provision of Section 1603 of the American Recovery Re-Investment Act or ARRA.This therefore qualifies the company for the 30 percent US Federal Tax Free Cash Grant. The grant is an estimated US$45 million and additionally, the company also qualifies for the US$64 million Puerto Rican investment tax credits.

These two sums total US$109 million of additional benefit that is over and above the plus USD100 million that Western Wind has received and will be receiving for the Kingman and Windstar Projects, respectively. The company’s Kingman project is a 10.5 MW fully integrated, combined wind and solar energy generation facility on 1,110 acres (approximately 4.5 sqaure kilometers) of land owned by the company in Kingman, Arizona. Windstar is a 120 MW wind energy farm in Tehachapi, California.

The MSA was secured by a US$12 million loan led by Rabobank and will be repaid with the project finance proceeds.

Jeff Ciachurski, president of Western Wind Energy states, "This is a monumental accomplishment to secure the cash grant before the expiry date and together with the Puerto Rican ITC, add another US$109 million of direct cash benefit to the Western Wind shareholders. Together with the previous US$100 million received and/or about to be received from Kingman and Windstar respectively, this brings the aggregate amount of cash grants, tax credits, and tax shield benefits totaling over a half a billion dollars".