UK unsubsidised solar build-out accelerates as ‘massive’ pipeline additions are revealed

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Reddit
Email
UK investor Next Energy Solar Fund energised one of the UK's first subsidy-free solar farms last year (pictured) and has plans to complete more this year. Image: NESF.

The UK is witnessing an acceleration of its subsidy-free solar build out, just as the country’s pipeline of utility-scale projects observed a record month for additions.

Having experienced something of a pandemic-driven hiatus earlier this year, a number of solar developers in the UK have now returned to action, either bringing projects into advanced stages of planning or breaking ground.

Yesterday (30 September) Hive Energy, one of the developers behind the mammoth Cleve Hill Solar Farm project planned for the UK’s south-east coast, confirmed construction work had started on a 13MW subsidy-free solar park in Rugby, Warwickshire. That site is expected to complete by the end of the year and forms part of a wider portfolio of subsidy-free solar projects Hive is developing.

Meanwhile, fellow developer Elgin Energy was particularly busy in September, confirming it was to develop a 38MW solar array on the site of a former World War Two airfield in Northamptonshire having already formed a joint-venture with prolific solar investor Foresight Group to develop 200MW of subsidy-free PV.

Bluefield Solar Income Fund (BSIF) also confirmed late last month that it had amassed a proprietary pipeline of grid-parity solar projects with a combined capacity in excess of 350MWp that it was now aiming to advance.

“The subsidy-free market in the UK is now with us,” John Rennocks, the investor’s chairman, said.

The flurry of activity also coincides with a notable uptick in new projects entering planning. Writing for UK sister publication Solar Power Portal, Solar Media head of market research Finlay Colville revealed that more than 1GW of new large-scale solar sites had entered the pipeline in September 2020, a new monthly record for capacity to enter planning.

This new capacity was spread across 28 sites and includes a prospective 350MW solar farm proposed by energy giant EDF.

The UK’s total solar pipeline now stands just shy of 12GW, around one-third of which has come to the fore in the last six months alone.

“This is massive on all counts, and something nobody saw coming 12 months ago,” Colville wrote.

The full details of all pipeline projects making up the 11.6GW pipeline in the UK can be accessed by subscribing to the UK Large-Scale Solar Farms: The Post-Subsidy Prospect List report, details of which are available on the link here.

4 October 2022
Solar & Storage Finance USA, the only event that connects developers to capital and capital to solar and storage projects, will be back in November 2022.

Read Next

PV Tech Premium
September 23, 2022
Plans for a temporary revenue cap on solar PV assets across the European Union (EU) could dent investor confidence in renewables, experts have warned, amid concerns that individual member states may be able to set lower caps specific to different technologies.
September 22, 2022
Tech major Amazon has expanded its renewables portfolio globally with 71 new projects with a total capacity of 2.7GW.
September 20, 2022
From module makers and BOS producers to utility-scale developers and community solar companies, the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) has taken centre stage at this year’s RE+ in Anaheim, California.
September 20, 2022
Private equity firm KKR and Hero Group have invested US$450 million in Indian independent power producer (IPP) Hero Future Energies (HFE) to support its renewables expansion.
September 12, 2022
The European Commission (EC) and the European Investment Bank (EIB) have agreed to provide €10 billion (US$10.1 billion) in support to regions most affected by the shift away from fossil fuels
September 7, 2022
German investment firm Aquila Capital has raised €1 billion in financing to support the development and construction of a 2.6GW renewables pipeline in Spain and Portugal over the next three years.

Subscribe to Newsletter

Upcoming Events

Upcoming Webinars
September 27, 2022
15:30 AEST (UTC +10)
Solar Media Events
October 4, 2022
New York, USA
On-Demand Webinars, Solar Media Events
October 11, 2022
Virtual event
Upcoming Webinars
October 18, 2022
10am (EDT) / 4pm (CEST)