Martifer Solar building 78.4 MW UK PV portfolio

Global solar power company Martifer Solar will add 78.4 MW of PV capacity to its U.K. portfolio following the announcement of an agreement with the U.K.’s Lightsource Renewable Energy.

Via the Portuguese company’s subsidiary Martifer SGPS, Martifer Solar will construct, operate and maintain four utility-scale PV plants across four locations in England – Cambridgeshire, Devon, Nottingham and swindon.

Martifer Solar has already developed a 9.2 MW solar plant at the 50 MW PV project at Spittleborough Farm in Wiltshire, England. Attracted by this success, Lightsource Renewable Energy has engaged Martifer Solar as the EPC for these four additional plants, and will add the existing plant at Spittleborough to its portfolio take the total up to five.

Once complete, this portfolio will be one of the largest in the U.K. to date. The project capacities range from 9.2 MW and 24.67 MW, and collectively the five plants under Martifer Solar’s wing will consist of 308,418 modules, installed in ground-mounted fixed structures across 155 hectares. Combined, the plants will generate some 69.05 GWh of solar energy a year, enough to power 38,815 typical U.K. households and offset the emission of 31,582 tons of C02 annually.

"We are proud to continually enforce our commitment to the development of solar energy in the U.K., and with a strong partner in Lightsource Renewable Energy, Martifer Solar has emerged as a leading global player in this market," said Martifer Solar’s U.K. country manager, João Cunha. "We have been very active developers in the U.K. market and are looking forward to a continued healthy pipeline of utility-scale projects in development to be ready to build throughout 2014 and early 2015."

Lightsource Renewable Energy MD Kareen Boutonnat added: "With the largest development pipeline in the U.K., we have to ensure we build on relationships with our trusted EPCs like Martifer Solar who already have significant experience developing and constructing solar farms in the U.K.

"This local knowledge is vital in ensuring our solar farms are constructed to a high standard and in a responsible nature, respecting the local communities."

The U.K.’s solar sector has enjoyed an extremely positive start to 2014. Ending last year with 1.45 GW of new PV capacity installed, the country is looking to advance on its position as the sixth-largest country for solar PV. Current estimates put the PV pipeline at 5 GW, with the U.K. on course to become the largest solar market in Europe based on current installation volumes.