01 March 2016, 12:58 Updated: 01 March 2016, 16:44
BAE Systems' solar development has delivered more than £300,000 in less than a year. Image: SunGift
A solar farm commissioned by defence manufacturer BAE Systems has saved the company more than £300,000 in operating costs since April 2015.
The plant was installed on a disused runway on the site in April 2015 as part of an initiative to be more cost effective and reduce carbon emissions.
Since its installation, the solar development has allowed BAE Systems’ site to save around £184,000 from its energy bills by reducing its reliance on energy supplied by the grid. In addition, the project generated £117,000 from the feed-in tariff.
The Samlesbury site’s solar farm is expected to provide up to a third of the facility’s energy demand in the first year, saving BAE Systems additional energy costs.
Shaun Costain, electrical authority and sustainability team leader for the manufacturing operations team, said: “Overall this delivered a cost saving to the business of more than £300,000 which we can invest into making our products and services more affordable for our customers. Above all though there are the obvious environmental benefits with this scheme, which we are proud to deliver.”
The installation is the latest example of solar development saving a company money off its energy bills. Tata Steel recently revealed that the solar farm near its Scunthorpe plant has saved the steelworks £230,000 in energy costs since April 2015 through a power purchase agreement with the 39MW site.
While BAE Systems’ solar farm has been able to generate additional revenue through the FiT, the reduced tariff rates now available mean many firms are looking instead at PPAs as a way to reduce their reliance on energy supplied by the national grid. These deals also protect firms from changing energy prices and provide security of supply.