Germanys BayWa r.e. has constructed and connected four large-scale U.K. solar farms in just 12 weeks, bringing them online just in time to qualify for the renewable obligation certificate (ROC) at a rate of 1.4.
The projects, located in the southeast England locations of Northampton, Aylesbury, Oxford and Reading, add a combined total of 85 MW of solar PV capacity to the U.K. grid, and their completion is indicative of the first quarter rush that is likely to see more PV added than the whole of last year.
Financing for all four projects was carried out by BayWa r.e. itself, and the company confirmed that it will now look for institutional investment partners to take on the long term ownership of the assets.
With wind and solar combined, BayWa r.e.s clean energy portfolio in the U.K. now stands at 230 MW, with the majority of those assets already constructed, commissioned and sold on to investors.
"These four plants offer our business partners attractive investment opportunities and our usual high quality standards assure them of correspondingly high output levels," said BayWa r.e. MD Matthias Taft.
"Alongside wind farm projects and trading in solar components, our solar project management business makes a significant contribution to our commercial success in the U.K."
Taft added that the company is aiming to install a further 80 to 100 MW of solar PV in the U.K. over the course of 2015, revealing that further projects are still at the engineering or construction stage. These projects if built at large-scale would be ineligible for the ROC, although future opportunities to construct and operate solar farms larger than 5 MW could bid for support under the new Contracts for Difference (CfD) scheme.