Record growth for independent renewables in Great Britain

Record growth for independent renewables in Great Britain

More than £400m – over £1.1m a day – was invested in independent renewable energy generation projects by businesses, farmers, landowners and communities last year in Great Britain.

The continued strong growth being seen in generation outside the big power companies came despite the renewables sector facing significant headwinds in political uncertainty and changes to renewable subsidies.

The independent generation sector has also had to deal with the impact of a fall in wholesale power prices which wiped an estimated £132m off the value of electricity generated last year.

The 2015 Energy Entrepreneurs Report, compiled by SmartestEnergy, reveals that the total invested in the sector outside of the major power utilities has now risen to almost £2.1bn with 4,460 commercial-scale sites of at least 50kW capacity now in operation.

The projects – ranging from community wind turbines to onsite generation plants at manufacturing sites – generated an estimated £1.08bn in wholesale energy a year, enough to power 5.7 million homes, or meet all of the public sector’s power needs.

The average invested to develop the 1,619 new projects last year was £258,000, down from £352,000, reflecting a higher proportion of solar projects which tend to be lower volume than other renewable projects.

Since the first Energy Entrepreneurs Report in 2013, the amount invested in the sector has risen by 75%, project numbers have more than doubled and their share of total UK generation risen by more than 50% to stand at over 7%.

 

Statistics_GreatBritain_SmartestEnergy

Source: Smartest Energy

Date: July 2015

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