23 May 2022
Developing a renewable energy scheme with NFU Energy
NFU Energy is a leading energy consultancy with a special focus on agriculture and horticulture. They help farmers and growers develop renewable energy schemes, improve their energy efficiency, procure energy and comply with energy regulation. Solar energy has particularly bright prospects thanks and to current and future high energy costs, there is now a real opportunity to benefit from cost savings and income streams in a much shorter timeframe. According to Jonathan Scurlock, chief renewable energy and climate change advisor at the NFU, “The Government’s ambition to increase solar energy generation by up to 500% by 2035 has given a major boost to the industry creating attractive diversification opportunities for some farmers and growers.” Attractive opportunities for farmers Farmers and growers have the potential to earn millions of pounds from hosting schemes on their land. However, the development process is not straightforward, and it can be easy to miss out on opportunities, select the wrong partner or leave money on the table. NFU Energy have partnered with specialist grid consultancy Roadnight Taylor to help farmers and growers maximise their chances of successfully developing schemes and their income potential. Hugh Taylor, chief executive officer at Roadnight Taylor says, “Land is a non-negotiable requirement for renewable energy schemes, which puts many farmers in an enviable position. However, land alone won’t guarantee success, and too often we have seen farmers disappointed because they weren’t aware of common pitfalls that could easily have been avoided.” Maximise your chances of success NFU Energy’s Renewable Energy Solutions service is designed around three key success factors to help farmers and growers avoid the pitfalls:
- Be proactive. If you wait to be approached by a developer, it’s likely they will also be approaching other landowners on the same part of the electricity network, who may end up competing with you for scarce capacity. NFU Energy help you get on the front foot.
- Use experts. Securing a viable grid connection offer is fundamental to developing a renewable energy scheme, and yet the industry average grid application success rate is only 15%. By contrast, NFU Energy and Roadnight Taylor’s success rate is around 85%, over five times better than the average.
- Retain control. Signing up with a developer too soon can lock you into an exclusive relationship – even if the developer loses interest or goes bust – and reduces your negotiating power. NFU Energy’s service enables you to wait until you have secured a grid connection offer before selecting a developer, which puts you in a much stronger position.