‘Every customer can be proud’: Guernsey utility unveils first solar array

Image: The Little Green Energy Company.

Guernsey’s electricity utility has unveiled the island’s largest solar installation to date on the rooftop of a power station, which it says will make every customer “proud” to have local renewable electricity.

Guernsey Electricity completed the 100kW system in late March after planning permission was granted in November 2017.

The system has been generating successfully since as the Channel Island’s largest solar array, feeding into Guernsey’s energy mix alongside existing on-island generation capacity and imported low-carbon electricity from France.

Alan Bates, Guernsey Electricity’s chief executive, said: “As well as offering the opportunity to lower emissions, this renewable energy development will benefit all islanders because it feeds solar energy directly into Guernsey’s electricity network. Every customer can be proud to say that a small proportion of their energy consumption is locally and renewably sourced.”

The company’s own installation team, Guernsey Electricity Ltd Commercial Contracting, undertook the electrical cabling and integration of the PV array into the existing electrical infrastructure, while supplier The Little Green Energy Company completed the installation of the PV panels and intermediate wiring on the roof of the Vale Power Station, on the north side of Guernsey.

Planning permission for the 100KW solar array was given in November 2017. The work to install the array commenced in February 2018 and completed in late March 2018. Image: The Little Green Energy Company.

The system will now be used to test how intermittent renewables like solar impacts the energy system of the island, with the utility behind the project considering future projects to further diversify its energy mix.

“Guernsey Electricity continues to consider how advances in technology can benefit the island as a whole, and installing the solar array is an opportunity for us to see the impact first hand of renewable energy,” Bates added.