Deal will see GRIDSERVE harness power from the UK's first unsubsidised solar farm for use at its first electric vehicle charging site in Essex
The UK's first solar farm developed without government subsidy, Clayhill in Bedfordshire, changed hands yesterday with developer Anesco selling it to UK green energy firm GRIDSERVE for an undisclosed sum.
Comprising 10MW of solar PV co-located with a 6MW energy storage facility, Clayhill generates enough electricity for around 2,500 homes while saving around 4,500 tonnes of carbon annually, according to Anesco. The deal is part of Anesco's strategy to move from asset owner to services provider, the firm said, adding that it will continue to provide operations and maintenance services for the site.
For GRIDSERVE, the purchase forms part of its 'Sun-to-Wheel' strategy to expand its presence as a provider of electric vehicle charging services, including via hybrid solar farms and Electric Forecourts. The firm plans to use some of the power generated by Clayhill at its planned Electric Forecourt in Braintree, delivering zero emissions electric vehicle charging using solar power.
"The addition of Clayhill to our portfolio - which marks GRIDSERVE's first acquisition of an operational solar farm - will enable us to guarantee that the amount of energy used at our Electric Forecourt in Braintree has been generated from zero carbon solar power," explained GRIDSERVE's chief commercial officer Jeremy Cross.
"Our mission is to deliver sustainable energy and move the needle on climate change, and this project will help us to support the UK's transition to net zero transport in the earliest possible timeframes."
Anesco has developed 115 utility-scale solar and energy storage projects, with a total capacity in excess of 750MW, according to the firm. It initially invested directly in projects but is now shifting its focus to its core business model of providing engineering services to solar and energy storage markets, the firm said.
"Engineering a subsidy-free development at Clayhill was a landmark achievement for the industry and is something we're very proud of," said Anesco CEO Mark Futyan. "It has proven to be a solid investment and we look forward to working with GRIDSERVE to ensure Clayhill continues to generate the optimal financial and environmental returns."
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