Trina Solar to add 49.9 MW to UK solar portfolio


Chinese PV giant Trina Solar Limited has announced today the acquisition of a 49.9 MW solar PV plant in the U.K. from local development company Good Energy Group PLC.

The utility-scale solar project is expected to be completed in the first quarter of next year, coming online ahead of the removal of the government’s Renewable Obligation Certificate (ROC) scheme, and thus being eligible to receive the 1.4 ROC rate.

Once operational, the plant will deliver clean solar energy to 14,000 local households, and will utilize Trina Solar’s high quality PV modules. Construction is scheduled to begin in the third quarter of 2014.

"This new project represents a new step forward for Trina Solar in the U.K. following the completion and grid-connection of our first two projects that totaled an installed capacity of 23.8 MW," said Trina Solar CEO and chairman, Jifan Gao. "This new project will further strengthen our leading market position in the U.K., as well as in Europe."

Gao also spoke of the U.K.’s growing importance in the European PV sector, particularly in the opportunities it presents for Trina to continue the expansion of its downstream business. “With a diversified downstream pipeline in China, Europe, Japan and the Middle East, we are well positioned to realize our goal of 400 MW to 500 MW project developments this year.

Earlier today, solar analysts NPD Solarbuzz revealed that the U.K. has now installed more than 5 GW of cumulative PV capacity, with 20% of that share coming from the surging utility-scale ground-mount sector.

However, such growth is expected to tail off after April next year once the ROC is removed and replaced with the Contracts for Difference (CfD) scheme, which critics argue tilts the support balance away from solar in favor of other renewable sources and segments.