Coillte and ESB have announced a new 50:50 joint venture company as the two commercial semi-state companies join forces for the renewable energy development.

FuturEnergy Ireland aims to materially help the country deliver on its green energy targets, achieving net zero emissions by 2050, as set out in the Government's Climate Action.

The Coillte-ESB joint venture is looking to actively drive the country's transition to a low carbon economy by developing 1GW of wind energy projects by 2030.

This is enough to power more than 500,000 homes.

FuturEnergy Ireland plans to develop commercially successful wind farms while maximising the support from local communities.

The wind farm projects have the potential to play a key role in a green economic recovery by creating jobs in rural areas and growing a green industrial sector, while also funding local development and enhancing amenities for host communities.

Coillte's portfolio of proposed wind farm projects and its Renewable Energy division has now transferred to FuturEnergy Ireland.

The majority of projects in the pipeline are either preparing to enter the planning system or are in the planning process awaiting adjudication.

Imelda Hurley, chief executive of Coillte, said the launch of FuturEnergy Ireland is a significant milestone for the company and the culmination of over 20 years of experience in this sector.

"It sees our entire renewable energy business transfer into the new joint venture company, which aims to deliver 1GW of renewable energy projects by 2030," Ms Hurley said.

"This makes Coillte a key player in Ireland's transition to a more sustainable future in electricity generation, a central component of the 2020 Programme for Government, Ireland's Climate Action Plan and the National Development Plan (2021-30)," she added.

Coillte is custodian of 7% of Ireland's land

Paddy Hayes, chief executive of ESB, said the company believes that developing and connecting renewable electricity makes a real difference for the customers and communities it serves, taking us closer to Net Zero.

"ESB's commitment to FuturEnergy Ireland builds on a strong history of successful partnerships with Coillte. It is an important investment in building a brighter future," Mr Hayes added.

The new company is led by chief executive Peter Lynch, a former managing director of Coillte's Renewable Energy Division.

"With the very strong mandate received from its two shareholders, FuturEnergy Ireland is positioned to make a lasting and positive impact in Ireland's renewable energy sector by delivering wind farm infrastructure for the benefit of all stakeholders, including local host communities," Mr Lynch said.

"By successfully bringing forward its portfolio of projects, FuturEnergy Ireland can become a sectoral industry leader and standard bearer for the responsible development of renewable energy infrastructure," he added.

Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications Eamon Ryan said that the Climate Action Plan 2021 sets out a more ambitious goal of up to 80% of electricity being generated from renewables by 2030, further reducing greenhouse gas emissions across the country.

"Onshore wind has been the predominant renewable technology to date, has delivered enormously for Ireland and will continue to play an important role in reaching this 80% level," Mr Ryan said.

"This ambitious joint venture between Coillte and ESB, with its mandate for the delivery of 1GW of renewable energy by 2030, is positioned to show real leadership in reaching our national climate goals," he added.