The RO’s first solar farm will sit on 20 acres of land at Potash Farm. Image: The RO.

Real estate developer the RO has gained planning consent for a 5MW solar park, and announced the launch of a new energy business.

The solar park will be entirely owned by the RO and sit on 20 acres of land at Potash Farm, located to the west of Milton Keynes.

Following on from this site, the company is planning to expand its solar interests as the right opportunities present themselves.

“We are incredibly proud to be launching a clean energy company, which reflects our group commitment to helping shape a more sustainable future and reducing our carbon footprint,” said Edward Rowlandson, Group managing director at the RO.

“The launch comes at a time when the UK is looking to rely on renewables more than ever for a multitude of environmental, economic, and geopolitical reasons. Although still very modest in size this initiative complements other group wide sustainability initiatives.”

The RO was launched in 1932, and now has a diverse range of interests including commercial property, housebuilding and venture capital businesses. RO Energy will support the Group’s wider ESG commitments, along with actions like monitoring its energy consumption and efficiency.

“Once built, our new facility at Potash Farm is expected to generate enough electricity for more than 1,800 homes, resulting in a reduction of more than 2,300 tonnes of carbon emissions per year,” added Rowlandson.

“It will therefore constitute a very tangible and significant commitment to our Group’s wider carbon reduction strategy and we hope to grow the business over time.”