One of the industry’s leading experts, Finlay Colville, has concluded that the United Kingdom’s large-scale solar pipeline is approaching 4 gigawatts thanks in part to a new 300 megawatt solar farm being developed in the south of England.
Finlay Colville is and has been one of the leading solar experts for many years, widely recognized as the leading authority on the solar PV industry. Formerly president and head of solar at NPD Solarbuzz before it was acquired by IHS back in late-2014, Colville is now head of Solar Media’s Solar Intelligence group. In other words, when Finlay Colville speaks, it’s worthwhile to listen.
Published this week, the latest report from Solar Media is its UK Large-Scale Solar Farms: The Post-Subsidy Prospect List, which lists multi-gigawatt capacity of new solar being planned for completion across the next few years. The List details 3.9 gigawatts (GW) worth of large-scale PV solar across the UK, spread over 340 sites, including the recent inclusion of a 300 megawatt (MW) solar farm being developed in the south of England which accounts for almost all the new capacity added over the last month.
Rumors of a 300 MW UK solar farm have been floating around for years now — even back to 2015, according to Finlay Colville, who in a recent article for PV-Tech describes the still-tentative and secretive details for the 300 MW project. It might sound counter-intuitive, but as Colville explains, “the more developers crave for publicity during the early days of a mega-solar planning process, the less likely it is to come to fruition.” This is obviously not the case with the unnamed 300 MW project, which is believed “to be spearheaded by one of the most credible and successful solar farm developers in the UK, and partnered now by a European-based developer/EPC with an equally-impressive track-record in large-scale solar farm build-out in the UK and on the global stage.”
The previous lack of this information explains why it is only now being considered certain enough to include in Solar Media’s Prospect List, however, Colville explains that there still remain several hurdles for such a project, including both the local and governmental planning process, infrastructure financing, and revenue streams if completed — the most important of which is the planning process, upon which all attention is now focused.
More information regarding the 300 MW project — and in fact the whole of the current near-4 GW large-scale solar pipeline — can be found in Solar Media’s UK Large-Scale Solar Farms: The Post-Subsidy Prospect List.