Guernsey Electricity has reached a significant milestone as one gigawatt hours of renewable electricity has now been produced on-Island for the first time and the company is calling for decisions to be made on the long-term future of energy supplies.
This figure has been generated by the photovoltaic (PV) solar arrays installed at Electricity House, Guernsey Post’s headquarters in La Vrangue, the George V Playing Fields and at the Longue Hougue Waste Transfer Station. Together, these systems have supplied more than 300,000 kilowatt hours (KWh) of renewable energy to the grid per year since the first installation in 2018, enough to power around 600 electric cars.
Stuart Blondel, Guernsey Electricity’s Chief Commercial Officer, said: “The PV arrays are working really well and this shows that investing in solar technology on a community scale is the right thing to do for the environment and our customers, so everyone on-Island benefits from sustainable electricity.
“Our long-term aim is to continue to invest in commercial scale solar arrays across locally, which is part of our Environmental Sustainability Strategy.”
Stuart added that whilst the milestone reached is significant, a decision is needed on the long term energy solution for the Island, particularly as demand for electricity is increasing.
“This is a great indication of how far we have come in a relatively short space of time but on-Island renewables cannot meet rising demand alone. Our subsea cable to France brings in up to 60MW and the power station supplements this at certain times of the year so as the need for electricity goes up, we use the power station – and fossil fuels – more.
“Critical decisions for the energy transition cannot come soon enough and as an Island, we need to act fast to provide the infrastructure to suit our electricity needs now and into the future.”
Guernsey Electricity is working with other local customers and hopes to install additional community scale PV arrays in the next year.
The main picture shows 309 roof mounted solar panels that were installed on a building at Guernsey Electricity, Northside, Vale, in 2018 which contribute to the supply of locally generated, clear, solar energy.