SCOTTISH small wind turbine manufacturer Gaia-Wind yesterday celebrated the production of its 1000th turbine since the company moved its operations from Denmark to Glasgow in 2011. The milestone was acknowledged as Gaia-Wind confirmed new orders from Japan and Italy.

The 1000th turbine also marks the beginning of a relationship with Scottish Water Horizons Ltd – a commercial subsidiary of Scottish Water – which is rapidly growing their renewable energy portfolio across the Scottish Water estate.

It has been a busy 18 months for Gaia-Wind, with the company winning the Scottish Green Energy Award for exports; achieving certification of its G-W133 turbine in Japan and opening a Japanese subsidiary; and exporting more than 90 per cent of production for the second consecutive year. They were also finalists in the Scottish Export Awards.

Gaia-wind turbines are now installed in Tonga, Japan, Australia, the United States, the Caribbean, Sweden, Denmark and Italy, as well as all over the UK. By 2020, Gaia-Wind turbines are expected to deliver a good economic return in almost every market without any form of government subsidy.

CEO Johnnie Andringa said: “We are thrilled to have reached this massive milestone which marks a terrific reward for the hard work of our team here at Gaia-Wind. We are proud to be working with Scottish Water Horizons and look forward to playing a role in their renewable energy development in the future and the Scottish Government support for renewables has been very important to us and to the farm scale wind industry.

“Gaia-Wind, in common with our competitors, has had to look at the world market to continue our growth. Our export focused strategy has enabled us to grow the share of export business for every year since 2012. That has enabled us to open or increase sales in, Italy, Denmark, the US, Australia, France and Israel.

“At 16,109 kilometres from our Glasgow manufacturing base, our turbine on Tonga sets the distance record for a Gaia-Wind export order. We see a strong and global market opportunity for renewable power generation in island economies like Tonga.

“The last five years have been a rollercoaster of changes in markets for Farm Scale renewables at home and abroad. Having witnessed a series of ham-fisted UK Government interventions in the support regime which created a very challenging market in the UK, we have been growing export markets and can now report that more than 90 per cent of sales are overseas – Denmark and Italy, in particular.

“When this [1000th] turbine is installed we will boast some 1500 Gaia-Wind turbines ‘in the ground’ for a combined operational time of more than 25 million hours. That’s over 2,500 years of dependable, renewable energy generation.”

Scottish economy secretary Keith Brown added: “Gaia-Wind’s product can help make renewable energy more accessible to more people and organisations.”

Scottish Renewables has also extolled Gaia-Wind for reaching the production landmark and delivering such a significant impact on the renewable energy industry.

Stephanie Clark, policy manager at Scottish Renewables, said: “For a business of this size to make such an impact is hugely impressive. We wish the company all the best in bringing wind energy to some of the most far-flung corners of the globe.”