Progress for EDF Renewables UK solar projects in England and Wales
Two consented projects that EDF Renewables UK added to its solar portfolio in March 2021 at Burwell (49.9 MW) in South East Cambridgeshire and Porth Wen (49.9MW) in Anglesey have progressed to the site preparation and construction stage, with the expectation that first generation will be in Q4 2022.
Solar, alongside wind and battery storage, is a significant enabler for the UK to reach its net zero target by 2050, and secure its energy supplies in the face of global uncertainty. Each project will generate enough low carbon energy for the equivalent of 9,500 homes.*
Since acquiring the projects EDF Renewables UK has conducted environmental and ecological pre-construction surveys, finalising planning conditions and highway permits, appointing contractors and engaging with local stakeholders. A community liaison group has been set up for both projects to foster good links with local people.
Community benefit funds of £20,000 every year for each project will be available for good causes, and parish and community council involvement will ensure this flexible funding is used to support local priorities, which could be educational programmes, new kit for sports teams, biodiversity initiatives, and much more.
Biodiversity improvements have been a key focus at both sites and EDF Renewables UK has plans to implement wildlife corridors, plant new hedgerows, and, in the case of Burwell, establish 1.8 hectares of new reedbeds.
EDF Renewables UK’s Head of Solar, Ben Fawcett said, “At a time when tackling climate change and energy security are at the forefront of all our minds, EDF Renewables UK is pleased to have made good progress at these two sites. Together, the projects will be capable of generating nearly 100 MW of renewable energy every year. The sites get plenty of sunshine and are near to a grid connection, making them excellent locations for solar.”
In addition to Burwell and Porth Wen, EDF Renewables has 3 GW of solar projects at different stages of development or in planning, including a solar farm in Redcar which will support an innovative green hydrogen project incorporating wind energy, in the Tees Valley.
*Load factors based on the five-year rolling averages on unchanged configuration basis using Table 6.5 of 'Digest of UK Energy Statistics' - latest figures as per July 2020 release.
About EDF Renewables
EDF Renewables UK and Ireland (www.edf-re.uk) is a subsidiary of EDF Group, one of the world’s largest low carbon electricity companies, and our investment and innovation is bringing significant benefits for communities. With our operating portfolio of 38 renewable energy sites including battery, onshore and offshore wind (together totalling 1 GW) we are providing much needed affordable, low
carbon electricity. We have an expanding portfolio with almost 5 GW of projects in planning and development, including wind, battery and solar PV.
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