What is it?

Repowering is the process of replacing an existing wind turbine, with a newer more efficient wind turbine on the same site. This will involve the dismantling of the existing wind turbine and the excavation and replacement or re-engineering of the existing turbine sub structure, in preparation for the replacement turbine.


The Why?

Many businesses and farmers in Northern Ireland, under the Northern Ireland Renewables Obligation scheme, took the decision to install second hand refurbished wind turbines. Now that some projects are several years into the scheme and due to the age of some refurbished wind turbines in these projects, project owners are now starting to see the great benefits of repowering to a newer more efficient wind turbine.


The Benefits

Quite simply, repowering is an opportunity to make your wind turbine site more efficient.

It reduces the risk of O+M issues with ageing turbines and offers better access to spare parts.

It will help improve turbine performance and increase returns.

Potential to improve the quality and reliability of exported power.

Give your insurers more peace of mind and thus reduce insurance costs.


The Regulations

  • Planning permission must be sought for the replacement turbine.
  • If a land lease exists, does it allow repowering or does the lease have to be re-negotiated.
  • Ofgem and NIE Networks have to be notified of any change to the generation site and all required processes adhered to.
  • Any turbine owner thinking about repowering should also seek legal advice early in the repowering process.
  • It is the responsibility of the renewable generating station operator to ensure that their project remains compliant with the NIRO legislation. Failure to do so could lead to the suspension or revoking of ROCs and NIRO accreditation.

The Next Step

Farm Energy NI can provide a full repowering project feasibility study, including Ofgem guidance and support, planning support and economic appraisal to members. To find out more on how to become a member and discuss your repowering project contact us on 028 79 30060 or

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Farm Energy NI is taking the spread of Coronavirus extremely seriously. Our number one priority remains the safety and well being of our employees and customers.

Our staff team is working from home but they are otherwise available as normal. The FENI office is closed but calls to it will be redirected and answered. Face-to-face meetings and networks events have been suspended and we are carrying out our correspondence through calls, emails and online conversations.

We are staying well informed of the developing situation and are following the advice and recommendations from the Government, relevant Public Health bodies and the World Health Organisation.

Current government advice defines energy generation as an “essential service” under the heading of “utilities, communication and financial services”. This means that NIE Networks, OFGEM & the Power Companies will continue to operate to the best of their abilities to ensure all power and export transactions are not interrupted.

If your generating site is being managed by our associates, Realise Energy Services, their engineers are continuing to service and maintain customers’ turbines to ensure their safe operation as part of the UK energy network and respond to unscheduled events as needed.

We will continue to monitor the situation and to be guided by advice from the appropriate authorities. We will also be doing our best to stay in touch with our members. If you have any questions, concerns or just like a chat we are here for you at this difficult time. Keep safe and keep well.

Farm Energy NI