Smaller scale solar installations are becoming more viable due to rapidly evolving photovoltaic technology, according to Jersey Electricity.
Ronez is the latest company to partner with the Company in the generation of solar power that will be exported to the grid.
Work is underway to convert the roof at Ronez’s bagging shed in St John to accommodate an array of panels sized at 72kWp. On completion, the solar array will supply 80,000 kWh annually – generating enough energy to power around 100 electric vehicles annually.
Improvements in panel technology mean that smaller installations like the Ronez solar array are becoming increasingly viable. Output from Ronez’s solar panels is 400W, compared with the 365W per panel generated at the Jersey Dairy and Woodside Farm developments.
Ronez Managing Director Mike Osborne, commented: “Working with JE on this installation made perfect sense for several reasons. Increasing Ronez’s sustainability is a key factor as we look to reduce our carbon footprint across our operations. As a business we are significant users of energy, so meeting any of our electricity demand from locally generated renewable energy is a step in the right direction.
“We commend JE on its investment model. Leasing airspace will encourage companies to partner with JE taking on less risk, which will no doubt accelerate solar panel installation in Jersey. We are optimistic that, in due course, this technology can be extended to other structures at our site.”
JE CEO Chris Ambler said: “While this project is smaller than our previous installations at Albert Bartlett and Jersey Dairy, it is a significant development in the use of newer, higher yielding solar technology which is opening up new possibilities on smaller roofs. It’s also great to be using local partner, Sun Works again for the installation works.
“Coupled with our low carbon imported hydro and nuclear power from France, our local partnership approach enables all Islanders to benefit from locally generated renewable power delivered via the grid; it helps support the local economy and diversify our energy sources.
“As we continue to develop our portfolio of roof-based projects, we are also looking to pursue ground mounted projects. We are keen to hear from any prospective roof or ground solar partners who are interested in working with us to develop more local renewable energy.
“JE continues to embrace technologies that support Jersey’s transition to net-zero and provide clean, reliable and affordable energy for the benefits of all customers.”
The parties have agreed a 25-year lease and expect the installation to be complete and generating energy by the end of 2022.
JE has completed several community-scale solar PV installations in recent years, notably with UK potato company Albert Bartlett, Jersey Dairy and Woodside Farm.