A 10-year power purchase agreement (PPA) – the first of its kind in the UK – has been signed for electricity from an offshore windfarm.
The PPA was signed by developer Ørsted and Northumbrian Water Group. The deal is an expansion of a renewable electricity supply agreement between the companies that started in April 2018.
The long-term agreement will see Northumbrian Water take almost a third of its renewable energy demand from Race Bank offshore windfarm.
From 1 March 2019, Northumbrian Water will source 30% of its renewable electricity directly from Race Bank. The move further drives Northumbrian Water’s sustainable and renewable energy strategy, building upon its existing solar, hydro, gas to grid and advanced anaerobic digestion power generation.
The corporate PPA will deliver approximately 100 GWh per year of renewable electricity from the offshore windfarm to Northumbrian Water consumption sites in the North East, Essex and Suffolk, amounting to approximately 1 TWh across the term of the agreement.
As well as supporting the growth of Northumbrian Water’s renewable energy activity, the agreement will help drive down Northumbrian Water's costs of operation through a long-term fixed price for electricity.
Northumbrian Water group commercial director Graham Southall said, “This PPA is not only a first of its kind in the UK. More importantly it aligns perfectly with our sustainability goals and our ambitions of creating a truly cohesive energy management strategy. The long-term stability this brings is fantastic for us, and great news for our customers and stakeholders, because it reduces operational costs without compromising our work.”
Under the agreement Ørsted will also provide an innovative balancing service of the wind output so that the electricity can be delivered to Northumbrian Water under their existing supply agreement.
Ørsted head of corporate PPAs Alana Kühne said, “Northumbrian Water shares our ambitions towards a greener future and are able to benefit from this journey through signing a corporate PPA from Race Bank. For Ørsted, this agreement is an important step towards building long-term green partnerships with corporate power customers.”
Race Bank is one of the most recently commissioned offshore windfarms in the UK having entered into operation in 2018. It is capable of generating up to 573 MW of electricity from its 91 Siemens Gamesa 6-MW wind turbines.