UK solar
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Macquarie’s Green Investment Group (GIG) and Enso Energy have announced a UK solar development joint venture, with the aim to create one of the UK’s largest subsidy-free solar and battery storage portfolios, and deliver clean energy to communities and businesses across the country.

GIG and Enso have identified an ambitious pipeline of projects which are currently in development and represent an initial 1GW of capacity.

Initial projects are grid secured and are being submitted for planning approval across England and Wales.

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Many of these projects will use newly available tracking and bifacial solar technology in an effort to ensure that the energy produced per hectare is maximised thereby reducing the physical footprint of each project.

By combining the solar farm with battery storage technology, the project is hoped to be capable of providing a more flexible output, address demand during peak periods, as well as providing auxiliary services and stability to the grid to facilitate increased levels of renewables on the system. The project plans and designs aim to significantly enhance the biodiversity of each site through the provision of a range of resources for local wildlife. Each development will include a Biodiversity Net Gain Assessment to demonstrate the benefits of each project.

Projects like these will play an important role in helping the UK meet its commitment to end its contribution to climate change by 2050, as the UK’s Committee on Climate Change has shown that meeting this target will require more renewable energy capacity. However, there are also potential economic benefits from a focus on delivering net zero, and a recent report from Vivid Economics has shown that domestic investment in low carbon technologies could create 270,000 jobs across the UK.

Ian Harding and Andrew King, co-founders of Enso Energy said: “Both Macquarie’s Green Investment Group and Enso Energy are totally committed to an ambitious programme of large-scale solar development. This partnership brings together two organisations that share the same vision, to dramatically accelerate the delivery of the benefits of low-cost solar energy to communities up and down the country”.

Edward Northam, Head of Green Investment Group Europe, said: “From our origins in the UK as the world’s first green investment bank, GIG has grown into a global green energy powerhouse while remaining steadfastly committed to accelerating the UK’s transition to a greener economy.

“The UK’s solar market holds huge potential to create green jobs and help the UK get closer to its aim of becoming a Net Zero economy. By combining GIG’s deep technical and financial capabilities with Enso’s highly experienced development team, our partnership has the skills and expertise to unlock that potential, bringing low-cost, low-carbon power to communities right across the UK.”

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