20 top UK universities strike £50m renewable energy deal

20 top UK universities strike £50m renewable energy deal

Twenty of the leading UK leading universities have struck a £50 million deal to buy renewable energy directly from British windfarms, The Guardian has reported.

This 10-year collaborative clean energy deal will see electricity from wind farms across Scotland and Wales supplied to universities including Newcastle University, the University of Exeter and Aberystwyth University.

This deal, which has been dubbed a “power purchase agreement” or PPA, is the first time that UK public sector energy users have joined together to buy cleaner energy.

The PPA was arranged by deal brokers at The Energy Consortium and Squeaky Clean Energy to fix the price of renewable electricity from a portfolio of British windfarms for the next 10 years.

Europe’s largest generator of renewable energy, Statkraft, who own and operate four onshore wind farms and one hydropower plant in the UK have guaranteed clean energy to the universities and will issue certificates matching the output of the windfarms.

Renewable energy deal will help more UK universities to become climate neutral by 2030

James Rolfe, the chief operating officer at Anglia Ruskin University, has said that the university joined the group of universities in this deal in declaring a climate emergency and plans to be climate neutral by 2030.

He added: “To support this commitment we aim to source all of our electricity from zero carbon sources by 2025, and this power purchase agreement makes a significant contribution towards this goal whilst delivering financial savings and budget stability.”

Richard Murphy, managing director of The Energy Consortium, said that this “ground-breaking deal”  will help enable the involved universities to reduce their carbon emissions and save money by accessing the power purchase market for the first time.

Murphy added that collaborative energy purchase deals mean that even small institutions are now “able to navigate a previously inaccessible market” too.

“The combined challenge facing the wider public sector is to secure reduced carbon emissions whilst saving money and I am delighted that these universities have secured both,” Mr Murphy added.

Pic: Jason Blackeye

Kate Frazer - Global Education Times (GET News)

Kate Frazer is a reporter for Global Education Times with a focus on UK/Ireland and North American education news. When she is not writing for GET News, Kate spends her time as an English and Maths tutor, and is currently pursuing her PGCE in Secondary Mathematics.
You can reach her at: kate@globaleducationtimes.org

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