August 19, 2021: Scotland-based energy company SSE has made its first venture into battery storage with the purchase of a 50MW installation in southern England, the firm announced on August 18.
SSE has bought the project development rights from Harmony Energy, which has been developing the site in Salisbury, Wiltshire for four years.
It won planning permission to install the storage system, with lithium-ion batteries, in April 2020, when it said the battery would connect to the distribution network at 132kVm, allowing more intermittent renewable energy to be added to the grid.
“We are entering a critical period for the future of the UK’s energy supply,” said director Pete Grogan at the time.
“Coal-fired power is on track to be phased out by 2025 and with strict targets to decarbonize our system through the continued roll-out of low-carbon generation, utility-scale energy storage systems like these are key to maintaining security, stability and flexibility.”
“Our distributed energy division has ambitions to build a significant portfolio of batteries — we’re looking at around 500MW of early stage opportunities — and we hope today’s announcement signals the seriousness of our intent in this market,” said SSE sector director for Distributed Generation & Storage Richard Cave-Bigley.
Harmony Energy owns a number of battery assets in the UK, ranging in size from 7.5MW to 99MW.
CEO Peter Kavanagh said the move demonstrated SSE’s confidence in Harmony’s energy storage technology, ‘which is fundamental to the UK’s energy mix and enabling the reduction of carbon emissions’.
It also owns a number of wind turbines and wind farms.