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Battery storage constraint lifted for the South West

Property consultancy Alder King, which is working with energy developer Green Hedge in the emerging battery storage market, has welcomed the news that Western Power Distribution has lifted its restriction on new connections to the electricity distribution grid in the South West of England.

Western Power Distribution will now consider all applications for connection to the grid with effect from 2017 onwards, removing a key barrier that had previously made battery storage schemes in the region very difficult.

Battery storage schemes, providing up to 10MW of power, are used to fill gaps in energy supply by providing a fast response in times of peak electricity demand.  Buildings, roughly the size of a large agricultural barn or 10 shipping containers, are filled with banks of batteries, silently responding to peaks in energy demand.  They are designed to keep energy costs lower by avoiding the need to purchase more expensive power from outside of the UK.

Alder King is working in partnership with specialist energy developer Green Hedge to source sites of 0.25 acres suitable for the construction of Battery Storage BarnsTM on agricultural land, or installations on commercial land.  In return, landlords with suitable sites can expect to receive starting rents of £20,000 p.a. with the option to purchase the building for £1 at the end of the 25 year lease for agricultural sites, or up to £50,000 p.a. for commercial sites, depending on the speed and cost of grid connection available.

Simon Smith, partner at Alder King, commented: “The Western Power Distribution moratorium on new connections in the South West of England has been a significant barrier to the roll out of this new and important clean energy generation technology.  We are delighted that the constraint has been lifted in this key target area and are expecting an influx of sites from landowners with suitable sites in the South West of England keen to take advantage of this opportunity for diversification and a long-term income stream.”

Niels Kroninger, Managing Director of Green Hedge, also commented: “The South West has been a key target area for us, and we have been disappointed not to be able to make progress until now.  This news has coincided with further reductions in technology prices meaning that Battery Storage BarnsTM and commercial installations are now financially viable.”

Alder King will be talking to agricultural and commercial landowners in the South West over the summer of 2016, with a view to securing suitable sites which could see the first schemes coming on line before the end of 2017.

More information on battery storage opportunities can be found here.

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