Yorkshire is on the way to acquiring its energy storage facility with Banks Renewables planning to invest £700,000 for a 1MW storage capacity at Hazlehead Wind Farm, Yorkshire. This project is Bank Renewables’ first investment in the co-location of energy generation and storage facilities. The company is under the family-owned group of North East property and Energy business, the Banks Group.
Banks Renewables, as an independent owner and operator of onshore wind power plants, has over ten wind farms. The total installed capacity under these wind farms is around 224MW. Three more wind farms located in Yorkshire also belong to them.
The Hazlehead wind farm is situated in West of Barnsley which lies between the Carlecotes and Crow Edge villages. This 1.5 megawatt-hour or 1MW energy storage plans has the support of the wind farm’s community liaison committee. The developer’s plans for this project have been submitted to Barnsley’s Metropolitan Borough Council. At present, the Hazlehead Wind Farms energy generation meets the demands of over 4,500 households.
Allan Pestell, Parish Councillor for Dunford and the chair for the community liaison committee, expressed support for the storage system on behalf of all the committee members. He stated that since the infrastructure for this storage capacity would be lost in vegetation, its impact on the local environment would be nil.
Mark Rowcroft, the technical manager for the Banks Group, stated that this capacity would be connected to the existing electric network at the wind farm. This project will be an opportunity for co-locating generation and storage, thus maximizing the infrastructure’s value. Apart from that, it would also minimize losses during transmission while also reducing operational costs significantly.
Energy storage systems like the one planned for Hazlehead Wind Farm are essential for improving the flexibility and resilience of the network. They are also crucial for increasing renewable generation on the National Grid. Projects like the Hazlehead storage capacity can help meet the UK’s Net Zero 2050 targets and to reduce costs to the consumer.
While the plans have been submitted, the work on the storage capacity is yet to begin. Once the planning committee for Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council approves it, the work by the developer can commence. As per schedule, the project is slated to come online by the end of 2020.
The new energy storage system will be similar to a shipping container in size. It would be capable of storing some of the energy that the three-turbine wind farm generates. It would also be able to capture energy from the larger National Grid and release it when demand is high. The storage plant’s battery technology is expected to increase the flexibility and resilience of the entire power network.
Furthermore, this storage facility will enable the capturing of cheap electricity generated when the demand is low or when the generation from solar and wind farms is more than what is being used. The power can be stored until needed, impacting the occurrence of sharp price spikes in cases of high demand. Another benefit of batteries is that they could decrease the equipment requiring installation and maintenance, thereby reducing costs that would otherwise reflect in the consumers’ electricity bills.
The peak capacity of the battery will be 1,000 kilowatts with a 1,500 kW-hour duration. This energy can sufficiently supply 35 electric cars at full charge.
Not only does the wind farm supply clean green energy to several thousand homes, but it also generates significant revenue that helps fund beneficiary communities. The storage project is being envisioned as a way to make further advancement in the site’s energy sector.
As the UK moves towards its net-zero emission goals, projects like the Hazlehead storage facility push the country closer to its target and help bring down costs to consumers. Once the Borough Council approves it, work is expected to start right away, making Yorkshire a more capable power generation location and storage centre.