Statkraft has entered the UK solar developer market for the first time, thanks to a Joint Development Agreement with solar developer UK Power Associates Ltd (UKPA).

Norway’s state-owned power giant has welcomed the agreement as a big step forwards in its plans to futher develop facilities in the UK. Already it has a pipeline of around 400MW onshore wind developments in planning.

“With three sites already selected for potential development, amounting to over 300MW, this partnership represents a great way of jump-starting our solar development activity” said Richard Mardon, head of development Statkraft UK.

The company was advised by law firm Burges Salmon’s Renewable Energy Team, and says that the agreement can offer a real contribution to the country’s green recovery, with the first site expected to be completed by 2023.

Jimmy Blackburn, engineering director at UKPA also welcomed the agreement, saying: “UKPA are delighted to partner with Statkraft, who have the passion and capability to progress our pipeline of renewable and grid integration projects.

“The combination of batteries, ancillary grid services with solar and wind power systems will provide significantly more stable energy supplies, as well as more efficient use of existing grid capacity.”

Statkraft has already been involved in a number of solar plus storage projects in the UK, with the batteries mainly providing ancillary services for the grid. These include signing a hybrid power purchase and optimisation agreement with Warrington Renewables for their 35MW site in May. In 2019, it partnered with redT on a fully-financed solar-plus-storage offering in what was hailed as a UK-first fully-funded offering for C&I customers. Additionally, it celebrated the completion of the first utility-scale battery in the Republic of Ireland in January, when its 11MW project on the Limerick/Kerry border became fully operational.

The company has already made inroads into the Irish solar market as well, acquiring a 320MW portfolio of utility-scale assets in October 2019.