First of its kind, City of London Corporation signs £ 40m PPA for Dorset solar site

First of its kind, City of London Corporation signs £ 40m PPA for Dorset solar site

In what it says is a first of its kind contract in the UK, the City of London has signed a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Voltalia for a 49MW solar farm in Dorset.

It will allow the Authority to benefit from renewable energy for 15 years from the newly-built 95,000 panel solar farm. In February, Dorset Council granted planning permission for a solar farm to be built on a site near the village of Spetisbury.

According to the City of London, the 'pioneering' £ 40 million green energy agreement is the first PPA signed directly between a governing authority and a developer of renewables. The announcement follows the procurement notice released by the Company in January for up to 55GWh of renewable energy per year.

It will help save about £ 3 million in energy costs for the City Corporation over its lifespan, and provide half of its electricity demand. It will help power buildings, such as the historic Guildhall headquarters of the Company, three wholesale markets, and the Barbican Arts Center.

Jamie Ingham Clark, chair of the Corporate Asset Sub-Committee of the City of London Corporation, said the scheme could lead the way for local authorities in the UK.

In recent years, with high-profile sales of Nottingham's Robin Hood Energy customer base and Bristol Energy prompting councils to search for alternative options for access to renewable energy, local authority-run energy providers have suffered significantly.

The City Corporation is gaining costs by signing a PPA with Voltalia, which has produced, installed and operated 22 solar farms with a total capacity of 193 MW since it began operating in the UK in 2012, and has more projects in the pipeline.

The PPA will help execute its Climate Change Plan for the City of London Corporation, which was launched in October and will see the Square Mile becoming net zero by 2040.

Since 2018, it has sourced 100 percent renewable energy, but says the new deal with Voltalia will allow new green infrastructure to be built.

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