BayWa r.e. is looking back at an eventful year in the UK and Ireland across its Projects and Operation Services businesses, celebrating successes with colleagues, as well as stakeholders.
Showcasing Projects Across the UK
2023 was a busy year for events for BayWa r.e. in the UK, with the commissioning and opening of the 42 MW Dalquhandy Wind Farm in South Lanarkshire, as well as the 30 MWp Bracks Solar Farm in Cambridgeshire. Together, these two projects are able to produce enough renewable energy to supply 39,000 homes – a remarkable contribution to the UK’s Net Zero targets.
Dalquhandy Wind Farm was sold and successfully handed over to Greencoat UK Wind PLC, making it the sixth wind farm the fund has bought from BayWa r.e. since 2013. The team completed the construction of the 30 MWp Bracks Solar Farm which was sold to RailPen and also progressed the construction of the hybrid 80 MWp solar and 8 MW battery project Scurf Dyke, which was sold to re:cap global investors. All of these projects will see BayWa r.e.’s Services team deliver the operations management for their respective asset owners.
Opening of Dalquhandy Wind Farm
Opening of Bracks Solar Farm
Earlier in the year, BayWa r.e. exhibited at AllEnergy in Glasgow where Managing Director Christine McGregor spoke at a panel discussion about how to attract young talent to the energy sector, and Repowering & Revamping Lead Saurabh Saxena held a talk about the importance of future proofing solar assets. BayWa r.e. also contributed to the AllEnergy Magazine with a comprehensive article detailing the benefits of co-locating wind and solar projects.
Exhibiting at AllEnergy in Glasgow
Christine McGregor speaking about how to attract young talent into the energy sector
Saurabh Saxena talking about the importance of future proofing solar assets
Spreading the Renewable Message
This year, the UK team have spent time making their voices heard on important topics, including discussions on the importance of PV end-of-life and decommissioning at Solar and Storage Live exhibition in Birmingham. As the earlier generation of solar assets begin to age, it is crucial that the solar industry thinks about how to sustainably manage them and consider solutions such as repowering, repurposing and recycling. Graham Pannell, Head of Grid & Electricity Regulation, was invited to speak at the Financial Times Energy Transition Summit as part of their “Rebuilding grids and networks for a decentralised clean energy world” panel, focusing on the importance of central strategic and spatial planning, and a net zero aligned consenting system.
Dr. Graham Pannell speaking at the Financial Times Energy Transition Summit
Saurabh Saxena talking about the importance of PV end-of-life and decommissioning at Solar and Storage Live
Ramping up CSR Efforts
Sustainability and corporate responsibility have played a significant role for the Operation Services business this year with all employees committing to undertake a charity day each for worthwhile cause. Staff have contributed to over 400 hours of community service, by volunteering for a range of charities across the UK, including soup kitchens, beach and river clean-ups, food bank centres, tree planting as well as supporting homeless charities and hospices. In total, the business has supported over 20 charities in 2023 who do vital work to help people and projects in local communities across the country.
The Services team has been working towards becoming paperless by planting a tree for every 100 site inductions that are completed online. The trees are planted with Project Eden Reforestation initiative in Madagascar and Nepal, in partnership with Intasite who are the site induction platform provider.
Strengthening Operation Services’ Partnerships
2023 has been a strong year for the Operations business and has seen BayWa r.e strengthen partnerships with Schroders Greencoat with the signing of long-term O&M contracts to manage assets for a 265 MWp solar portfolio in the UK. The team has also signed long-term PV contracts with Octopus Energy to take on a total of 97 MWp in managed solar assets; enough green energy to power 22,500 homes as well as the operations and maintenance of the 15 MWp Bryn-yr-Odyn solar farm in north Wales.
The team deliver a wide range of O&M, as well as commercial and technical asset management services to a managed portfolio of over 1.9 GW, comprising of wind, solar and BESS projects in the UK.
Celebrating BayWa r.e. Colleagues
It has also been a great year for celebrating BayWa r.e. employees in the UK: Gemma Gass, GIS Analyst, and George Kay, Solar Design Engineer, were both nominated for a Young Professionals Green Energy Award, and Senior Legal Counsel Sarah Drummond was nominated for a Scottish Legal Award.
Success in Ireland
BayWa r.e. has had a transformative year in Ireland in 2023. After officially opening new offices in Cork in late 2022, the team has now submitted their first planning application for the 60 MWp Springmount Solar Farm project to Tipperary County Council, with a decision expected in early 2024. BayWa r.e.’s Irish team is currently looking at submitting several other solar and wind projects into the planning system next year.
Driving Growth for UK Projects
BayWa r.e.’s UK Project Development team has celebrated a number of successes throughout the year by receiving planning approval for the company’s first standalone battery energy storage project, the 171 MW Meadow Farm in Stockton-on-Tees, as well as two solar projects; the 40 MWp Clump Solar Farm and the 22 MWp Hill Solar Farm in Leicestershire.
2023 would not have been as successful for us without the fantastic efforts of our team. They continue to set higher standards in the renewable energy industry, despite a challenging policy and regulatory environment. We are looking forward to continuing our work on innovative solutions to meet those challenges in the new year in our pursuit to shape the future of green energy in the UK and Ireland.
Christine McGregor, Managing Director for BayWa r.e. in the UK and Ireland
It’s been a strong year for the Operations Services business. Not only have we driven value for our partners across our O&M portfolio, we have also doubled down on our CSR efforts, making important contributions to local communities across the UK. We look forward to the coming year as we renew our focus on repowering and revamping which is becoming increasingly important to the long-term success of the UK renewables industry.
Morgan Harris, Managing Director at BayWa r.e. Operation Services Ltd.
Looking Ahead to 2024
Looking ahead to 2024, BayWa r.e. is anticipating commercialising more projects across the UK. The Project Management Team is currently well into construction of the 43.2 MW Broken Cross Wind Farm project in South Lanarkshire, and has commenced constructing the 46 MWp Driffield Solar Farm and the hybrid 80 MWp Scurf Dyke Solar Farm & BESS projects, which are both located in the East Riding of Yorkshire. These developments are all making significant contributions massive to delivering a pipeline of 3.35 GW across the UK and Ireland in the coming years.
2024 is set to be an important year for the PV repowering and revamping business as the Operation Services team gears up to deliver several exciting projects for both existing and new customers, bolstering BayWa r.e.’s commitment to making the green energy revolution across the UK a reality.