A former quarry has been transformed into a solar site which will fuel the production of one Great Britian’s largest soft drink makers.
BritVic will use the solar energy to power its sites Rugby, London and Leeds. The renewable energy covers three quarters of the company’s energy needs on those sites.
The company said it aims to reach 100 per cent in the future.
“This is an exciting opportunity to ensure that the some of the country’s most recognisable and much-loved soft drinks are powered by renewable energy,” BritVic sustainable business director Sarah Webster said.
“We know consumers want to buy more sustainable products, and this is another step towards reducing carbon emissions and our long-term sustainability targets.”
The former quarry had been deemed unsuitable for farming but the solar site, which was officially opened in February, is a unique initiative.
The solar site, commissioned in January 2024, will generate 3.1 Gigawatts of power, enough to power the equivalent 11,500 homes. BritVic estimates this could cut as much as 1,113 tonnes of carbon dioxide from the drink manufacturer’s supply chain each year – the equivalent of planting 260,000 trees.
Working with renewables provider Atrato Onsite Energy, the 650,000 square metre solar installation, will scale up to produce 28 Gigawatt hours.
“We are thrilled to complete this landmark and unique agreement with Britvic, reducing carbon emissions while delivering attractively priced energy,” Gurpreet Gujral, Managing Director, renewable energy at Atrato Group said.
“Our business model is all about designing unique structures for clients tailored to their energy consumption needs and real estate site constraints, while delivering on sustainability targets and lower energy costs.”
The double-sided solar panels in the former quarry use tracking devices to follow the sun and improve their efficiency by 10 per cent.
“Britvic has been a significant employer in Beckton for over fifty years,” Sir Stephen Timms said.
“Together with last year’s investment in a state-of-the-art heat recovery system, I’m delighted this agreement will help the site and the business deliver on its important net-zero ambition.”