Lightsource agrees largest UK airport PPA solar project
Lightsource Renewable Energy, Europe’s leading solar energy company, has signed a 25-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Belfast International Airport for the largest solar project to connect to a UK airport.
Lightsource will hard-wire a 4.84MWp (Megawatts peak) off-site solar farm into the Belfast International Airport private network, providing 27 percent of the airport’s annual electricity demand.
The entire project is being funded, installed and operated by Lightsource. Belfast International Airport will buy the clean electricity produced by the solar farm via a private wire which connects the installation directly to the user without connecting to the national grid.
By hard-wiring the solar farm directly into the airport, Lightsource will provide the airport with a source of renewable electricity, reduced energy costs and give a boost to their green credentials - with a saving of 2,345 tonnes of carbon emission each year.
Through its PPA offering, Lightsource is able to finance and develop utility-scale solar and energy storage solutions using land near to site - connecting them directly into the supply of major energy users such as factories, warehouses, data centres, transport hubs, leisure centres, chemical plants and water treatment facilities.
By 2017 it is anticipated that non-commodity charges (those costs over and above the wholesale price of the electricity) will become the largest proportion of the cost of delivered electricity. Made up of Government scheme charges, such as the Renewable Obligation and the Capacity Mechanism, along with growing transmission and distribution costs, non-commodity charges are set to increase substantially – by as much as 3p/kWh.
A private-wire PPA can help businesses reduce exposure to energy market volatility and enable load shifting to avoid peak pricing by giving access to clean power at below the cost of importing power from the grid. Drawing power from an off-site solar installation also creates excellent CSR opportunities by helping businesses meet energy and carbon reduction targets.
Nick Boyle, CEO at Lightsource, said: “We’re very excited to be able to announce the PPA project at Belfast International Airport. There remains huge opportunity for solar energy around the UK and Ireland. Industries around the world have a growing appetite for reliable renewable technologies that help them gain control of spiralling energy costs and reduce their carbon footprint. Large-scale PPA solar projects provide businesses with an opportunity to do just that by allowing them to fix their energy costs without the need for upfront investment.”
Alan Whiteside, Operations Director at Belfast International Airport, said: “Belfast International Airport is pleased to be working with Lightsource on this unique project. We’re breaking new ground with this exciting venture. Not only does it give us the opportunity to reduce our carbon footprint, but it also means reduced energy costs while improving the integrity of our supply.
“This solar farm has the capability to supply all our electricity demands on a peak summer day, and still export via the airport’s internal HV ring to the NI Grid. Lightsource have been extremely professional throughout the process, working closely with the airport’s M&E Projects Supervisor, Colin Sloan, to bring this project to fruition.”
Follow @ManufacturingGL and @NellWalkerMG
Ultium Cells LLC/Li-Cycle: Sustainable Battery Manufacturing
Ultium Cells LLC - a joint venture between General Motors and LG Energy Solutions - has announced its latest collaboration with Li-Cycle. Joining forces the two have set ambitions to expand recycling in North America, recycling up to 100% of the scrap materials in battery cell manufacturing
What is Ultium Cells LLC?
Announcing their partnership in December 2019, General Motors (GM) and LG Energy Solutions established Ultium Cells LLC with a mission to “ensure excellence of Battery Cell Manufacturing through implementation of best practices from each company to contribute [to the] expansion of a Zero Emission propulsion on a global scale.”
Who is Li-Cycle?
Founded in 2016, Li-Cycle leverages innovative solutions to address emerging and urgent challenges around the world.
As the use of Lithium-ion rechargeable batteries in automotive, industrial energy storage, and consumer electronic applications rises, Li-Cycle believes that “the world needs improved technology and supply chain innovations to better recycle these batteries, while also meeting the rapidly growing demand for critical and scarce battery-grade materials.”
Why are Ultium Cells LLC and Li-Cycle join forces?
By joining forces to expand the recycling of scrap materials in battery cell manufacturing in North America, the new recycling process will allow Ultium Cells LLC to recycle cobalt, nickel, lithium, graphite, copper, manganese and aluminum.
“95% of these materials can be used in the production of new batteries or for adjacent industries,” says GM, who explains that the new hydrometallurgical process emits 30% less greenhouse gases (GHGs) than traditional processes, minimising the environmental impact. Use of this process will begin later in the year (2021).
"Our combined efforts with Ultium Cells will be instrumental in redirecting battery manufacturing scrap from landfills and returning a substantial amount of valuable battery-grade materials back into the battery supply chain. This partnership is a critical step forward in advancing our proven lithium-ion resource recovery technology as a more sustainable alternative to mining, " said Ajay Kochhar, President, CEO and co-founder of Li-Cycle.
"GM's zero-waste initiative aims to divert more than 90% of its manufacturing waste from landfills and incineration globally by 2025. Now, we're going to work closely with Ultium Cells and Li-Cycle to help the industry get even better use out of the materials,” added Ken Morris, Vice President of Electric and Autonomous Vehicles, GM.
Since 2013, GM has recycled or reused 100% of the battery packs it has received from customers, with most current GM EVs repaired with refurbished packs.
"We strive to make more with less waste and energy expended. This is a crucial step in improving the sustainability of our components and manufacturing processes,” concluded Thomas Gallagher, Chief Operating Officer, Ultium Cells LLC.