Centrica acquires battery storage project that could "unlock North Sea wind energy potential"

LONDON - CENTRICA Business Solutions has secured the development rights for a fully consented 30MW 2hr battery storage plant in Aberdeenshire that will help maximise the use of renewable energy in the Scottish North Sea.

The site in Dyce, near Aberdeen is located near a connection for North Sea offshore wind farms and will contribute towards managing network constraints – by storing electricity when it is abundant for times when it is not, helping improve the energy independence of the UK and reduce our reliance on fossil fuels. 

Last year, the National Grid paid £244million to wind farm operators to shut down turbines, as they risked overloading the network, a process known as curtailment. Battery storage is one method of helping to utilise that wasted energy resource, ensuring fewer green electrons are curtailed. 

Once built, the 30MW 2hr Dyce battery storage plant will store enough energy to power 70,000 homes for an hour. This discharge happens up to four hours per day.

The project was developed by Cragside Energy Limited, backed by Omni Partners LLP, and obtained planning consent in November 2021. The go-live date for the project is mid-2024, construction should last eight months and will be aligned with the grid connection date.

“Battery storage can play a strategic role in helping to transition away from fossil fuels, by smoothing out the peaks and troughs associated with renewable energy generation,” said Bill Rees, Director of Centrica Energy Assets. “We should treat renewable energy like a precious resource and projects like this can help to maximise its efficacy.” 

The project forms part of Centrica Energy Assets’ plan to deliver 900MW of solar and battery storage assets by 2026. Centrica already owns and operates the 49MW fast response battery at Roosecote, Cumbria. 

Centrica Business Solutions Managing Director Greg McKenna, said: “Improving the energy independence of the UK is essential to help manage energy costs and move away from fossil fuels. The Government has set a target of a green electricity grid by 2035 – that’s only achievable if we build out the level of flexibility in the system, to help manage supply and demand.”

Centrica Energy Assets will work with Cragside Energy to identify new opportunities in the energy storage space. Cragside Energy’s growing pipeline exceeds 200MW, and focuses on low carbon and flexible assets, including energy storage, solar and peaking plant schemes.

Ben Coulston, Director of Cragside Energy, added: “Targeted investment into a complementary mix of technology and infrastructure is crucial if the UK is to fully harness its renewable energy potential. Battery storage, such as the project in Dyce, will contribute to the upkeep of a stable and resilient network and we have enjoyed partnering with Centrica as the project transitions into the next phase”.


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