The UK onshore wind farms owned and operated by Banks Renewables have hit two major energy generation landmarks.
After generating one million megawatt hours of green energy in the last two years alone, the firm’s ten onshore wind farms have just produced their three millionth megawatt hour of green energy in total, which is enough to meet the annual electricity needs of around 1,040,000 homes – or a city three times the size of Birmingham.
The electricity generated by the portfolio has also displaced around 584,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide from the UK’s electricity supply network, while a total of around £3,500,000 has so far been distributed from the community funds linked to each wind farm, which provide funding for voluntary groups, environmental projects and good causes in their respective communities.
The family-owned firm initially used revenues generated from coal mining to drive its diversification into the onshore wind sector and has since become one of the industry’s leading independent owner/operators in the renewable energy industry.
It currently operates four onshore wind farms in Yorkshire, as well as two each in North East England, North West England and Scotland.
Its generating capacity is set to increase further this year with the 15-turbine Kype Muir Extension Wind Farm in South Lanarkshire due to come online imminently, while it has also secured planning permission for the Lethans and Mill Rig Wind Farms in Scotland.
The company recently also secured planning permission to extend the lifespan of its Armistead Wind Farm in South Cumbria up to a maximum of 40 years, and is looking to do the same for four more of its wind farms across Yorkshire and the North East.
Richard Dunkley, managing director at Banks Renewables, says: “The far-sightedness of our decision to use revenues generated from coal mining to drive a successful diversification into the renewable energy sector has been amply demonstrated over almost two decades.
“Alongside the environmental and energy security benefits they’re delivering, our wind farms also make a vital, long-term contribution to the well-being of the communities in which they’re located, a contribution which is well recognised by the people who live in them.
“This direct community contribution has become more important than ever before and we are committed to maintaining it for the long-term in ways which are most appropriate for each individual location.”
Alongside its onshore wind developments, Banks is also looking to deploy further renewable energy technologies at a number of new sites across Scotland and the north of England.
It recently announced plans for a groundbreaking new green energy hub at the former Thorpe Marsh power station site near Doncaster, which includes what is thought to be the largest battery energy storage system currently being planned in the UK, and is also looking to develop a major new solar energy generation and battery energy storage project near Rotherham.
Richard Dunkley continues: “We are focused on maximising our contribution to the UK’s transition to net zero by continuing to increase the amount of clean energy that we generate for use in the UK’s homes, school, hospitals and businesses, both from our onshore wind farms and through the new technologies that we’re looking to deploy in the coming years.
“Using the widest possible range of renewable energy generation technologies will allow the UK to work towards reaching its ‘net zero’ and climate change objectives more quickly, while also benefiting British consumers through lower energy prices.
“Onshore wind is one of the cheapest and most easily scalable electricity generation technologies and should be a central part of the UK’s future energy and energy security strategy.”