A ground-breaking solar and battery installation will help Portsmouth International Port become the UK’s first Zero Emission port thanks to action by Liberal Democrat councillors.
The installation work started in the New Year and is expected to be completed by the summer. When complete, the power produced by the 1,670 solar panels will contribute around 30% of the site’s power!
The project breaks new ground nationally. It is the first UK port to have solar canopies and a mega-watt sized battery installed as part of a renewable installation.
When completed, the 750 kilowatt peak system, will be the largest solar and battery installation to date across the Lib Dem-led city council’s portfolio of renewable generation.
As well as generating carbon-free power, the solar canopies will provide shade for cars waiting to board ferries; allowing them to stay cooler for longer, without having to run their engines. The canopies also provide the infrastructure to support additional electric vehicle (EV) charge-points.
The battery, with a capacity of 1 megawatt hour (enough to run a typical home for 3 ½ months), will capture green power that would otherwise be exported from the site and using it in the Port’s buildings when it is needed.
The new battery will work in tandem with an upcoming battery storage pilot announced in the summer; supplying balancing services to the national grid and storing power during lower pricing periods. When complete, it is estimated that 98% of the electricity consumed by the Port will come from the solar and battery, combined.
Fratton Liberal Democrat councillor, Dave Ashmore, who is Portsmouth’s Cabinet Member for Environment and Climate Change, said: "This project is a brilliant example of the fantastic work the council is doing to reduce Portsmouth’s carbon emissions, in line with our commitment to reduce carbon emissions to net zero by 2030.
"This innovative project, incorporating rooftop solar PV, solar canopies and large-scale battery storage will reduce annual emissions by 159 tonnes at this busy site."