The solar farm designated to provide the green power behind the Iceland and Octopus Energy supplier deal – which was announced earlier this year – is set to open in the coming months.
Operations at the Breach solar farm in east Cambridgeshire, which Octopus manages on behalf of Octopus Renewables Infrastructure Trust (ORIT), will open some time in the fourth quarter of 2023, according to the energy company.
Frozen food retailer Iceland and Octopus Energy announced in March that they had signed a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) which is expected to help the retailer reduce its carbon emissions by 23k tonnes of CO2 a year.
The ten-year deal will see green power supplied to Iceland from the Breach solar farm, which is expected to supply circa 64 Gigawatt hours (GWh) of renewable energy every year to power 150 Iceland sites. In total, the power will cover 14% of Iceland Foods’ electricity needs for its UK stores.
Octopus Energy Generation acquired the Breach solar farm in June 2022 on behalf of ORIT, with construction on the site beginning in November 2022.
Tarsem Dhaliwal, CEO of Iceland, said: “This partnership is an exciting step in our journey towards achieving net zero by 2040.
“It also gives us some clarity on our energy costs for the coming years – at a significant discount to the current wholesale price. This helps to mitigate the impact of the volatility that has plagued the industry for the past 12 months.”
He added: “Switching to more renewable forms of energy to power our sites will be a huge priority for us in the coming years, as we continue to identify solutions to optimise sustainability across the business.”
Octopus Energy Generation is one of Europe’s largest renewables investors, and its fund management team oversees almost £6 billion of green energy sites. The team has signed various PPAs for the green energy sites it manages, including to send onshore wind power from Scotland to personal care products company Kimberly Clark’s manufacturing and distribution facilities.
Zoisa North-Bond, CEO of Octopus Energy Generation, remarked: “It’s great to see such a massive British firm like Iceland Foods accelerate its renewable energy journey, freezing its foods with the power of the sun.
“Iceland has been a trailblazer in sustainability – and the more companies that follow their lead, the quicker we can reduce our economy’s dependence on expensive fossil fuels and shift to a future powered by clean energy.”
[Image credit: Green Retail World]