A new solar farm to be opened today by Claire Perry MP, Minister for Climate Change & Industry, is claimed to be the first solar farm in the UK to operate without a government subsidy.The 10MW farm at Clayhill near Flitwick in Bedfordshire has been built by Anesco and it is co-located with a 6MW battery which will enable it to provide grid services.
Steve Shine OBE, Anesco’s executive chairman, said Clayhill “proves that the Government’s decision to withdraw subsidies doesn’t have to signal the end of solar as a commercially viable technology.”
He continued: “Given our extensive experience with solar and storage projects, we took a fresh look at how we could finance and develop Clayhill without needing a renewables subsidy. We sought the views of our supply chain and with them looked at every aspect of the project – its design, the technical specifications, the use of the very latest technology and the costs of the various components. By deciding to co-locate the 6MW battery storage unit and by working closely with our supply chain partners, we have been able to achieve a subsidy-free development.”
Planning permission for the 10MW solar farm, along with the five battery storage units, was granted by Central Bedfordshire Council in 2015. The construction and installation of the project was completed in 12 weeks.
Anesco now has more than 100 solar farms in its portfolio totalling 480MW. BYD supplied the solar panels and the five battery storage units and Huawei supplied the solar inverters.
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