Ripple Energy names Devon solar farm as third consumer-owned renewable energy site

Ripple Energy has named Derril Water in Devon as its first shared solar farm project. Renewable energy company RES, which developed the project, will sell the 42MW project to a Ripple-managed co-operative.
Ripple is ring-fencing 10% of the ownership of the solar farm for those in the surrounding area and is urging interested local households and businesses to come forward. From 18 April, individuals in the local area will be given two weeks exclusive access to buy shares from the ring fenced portion of the project.
The remaining 90% of the people-powered solar farm will be open to other individuals. Ripple already has two consumer-owned wind farms in Wales and Scotland (full disclosure: the author has a share). Derril Water will be Ripple’s third project to date and is an important milestone in its mission to make green energy ownership accessible to everyone.
RES designed Derril Water to be dual-purpose, enabling solar and agriculture to co-exist – less than 4% of the land is physically occupied by the arrays and infrastructure, so sheep grazing can continue on over 96% of the site during operation. There will be a range of biodiversity enhancements around the site including bee banks, wildflower meadows and a 30& increase in hedgerows.
Sarah Merrick, founder and CEO of Ripple Energy said:
“By offering consumer ownership, Derril Water Solar Park will become a completely different kind of solar park, one owned by the people it supplies low cost green power to. We want Derril Water to become a blueprint for consumer-owned solar parks around the world. We want to create a wave of green energy ownership that enables people to make a real climate impact, as well as stabilising their energy bills. People from all corners of Britain will be able to co-own Derril Water Solar Park, and we hope as many as possible will become part of this pioneering project.”
Lucy Whitford, RES’ Managing Director – UK&I said: “Bringing Ripple on board at Derril Water offers a new way for consumers to share in the benefits of renewable energy and play a part in fighting climate change. The ability for local households and businesses to get involved connects the community directly with the project. Ripple’s model at Derril Water provides a direct way for consumers to lower their energy costs at such a critical time.”