Centrica Business Solutions has established a team to develop large scale, grid-connected solar and battery storage assets in the UK and Europe.
Centrica Energy Assets will develop, build, manage and optimise a portfolio of Centrica-owned solar and battery projects that will help provide the company’s customers with clean energy.
The UK solar market now exceeds 14GW, and Centrica has to date completed over 85MW of projects including most recently a 4,000 panel project for the British Army, covering an area the size of eight football pitches at the Defence School of Transport near Beverley, Yorkshire.
Centrica has an aspiration to build a total of 650MW of solar farms by 2026. In addition, the company aims to grow its battery portfolio over the same period, meaning its low carbon assets could increase by around 900MW.
They will work with landowners and farmers to deliver the plans, helping them to diversify, secure additional revenues and take part in the fight against climate change.
The battery assets would be controlled via Centrica Business Solutions’ industry leading PowerRadar™ demand side response platform, which ensures that the assets achieve maximum value across both ancillary and wholesale markets.
The platform, acquired with the purchase of Belgian company REstore in 2017, acts as an alternative to a large physical power station, instead aggregating a portfolio of smaller flexible loads to form a Virtual Power Plant. Centrica Energy Marketing & Trading, which manages approximately 20 per cent of the Corporate Power Purchase Agreement market in Europe, ensures a further route to market for the power generated.
Centrica has committed to reach Net Zero by 2045 and for its customers by 2050. Reducing the carbon content of the company’s energy supply by supporting the expansion and take-up of clean energy is core to achieving Net Zero.
Greg McKenna, Managing Director of Centrica Business Solutions, said: “In recent weeks, we’ve seen a commitment from Government to a green grid by 2035, but to achieve this it’s vital we build out the level of storage to help manage supply and demand. This new team will invest in the technology that will help us reach that 2035 target and provide the back-up that ensures we can make best use of the renewable energy generated.”
Bill Rees, Director of Centrica Energy Assets, will lead the newly formed team: “Fighting climate change is going to take multiple partnerships, with landowners, technology companies, and a diverse, dynamic workforce with the energy and passion to deliver a net zero future for the UK. We are creating forward-looking and sustainable jobs, simultaneously supporting the government’s economic and climate ambitions.”
Photo Caption: British Army solar farm at Defence School of Transport. Credit: Cpl Danielle Dawson MOD Crown Copyright 2021
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