EDF Renewables UK has clinched a power off-take deal with Network Rail to supply the British state-owned railway operator with electricity from a 49.9-MW solar park it will build in England.
The contracted power volume, equal to the demand of around 20,000 homes, will be used at Network Rail’s offices, depots and railway stations across the UK. The railway infrastructure manager said on Wednesday that the deal will help it cover around 15% of its annual consumption of non-traction energy.
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EDF Renewables will meet its commitment under the agreement from the Bloy’s Grove solar photovoltaic (PV) project, to be located between Swainsthorpe and Mulbarton in Norfolk, in the East Anglia region. The scheme was granted planning consent by the South Norfolk Council council in June.
“This first of its kind agreement is a huge moment not just for Network Rail but the rail industry as a whole, setting in motion a journey which will see Britain’s favourite transport become even greener, cleaner and more sustainable,” said Rail Minister Wendy Morton.
Network Rail has set a goal of sourcing 100% of non-traction energy from renewable sources by 2030, in line with the UK’s net zero targets by 2050.