Capturing The Sun In Eastbourne
The University of Brighton and Brighton Energy Co-operative are building on the success of their collaborative solar photovoltaic (PV) installation at the university’s Varley Park student accommodation with a new project at the university’s campus in Eastbourne, the sunniest town in the UK.
The airspace above the roofs of Hillbrow Sports Centre and Robert Dodd Annexe will be leased to Brighton Energy Co-operative for twenty years, who will install 538 solar PV panels at no cost to the university. The university will then pay Brighton Energy Co-operative for the electricity generated by the panels, saving approximately a third off the price of grid electricity. This not only reduces the cost of powering the university’s buildings, but also provides security against fluctuating energy costs.
The solar arrays, with 120kW capacity at Hillbrow and 28kW capacity at Robert Dodd Annexe, will generate 150,000 kWh clean electricity each year, enough to power 35 UK households. This will save the university over £6,000 each year and cut annual carbon emissions by 60 tonnes CO2.
Abigail Dombey, the university’s Environmental Manager, said: “At a time of reducing budgets, we can still install new solar PV panels and increase onsite renewable energy generation, thanks to this ground-breaking agreement with Brighton Energy Co-operative.”
During the twenty years of the lease, the arrays are expected to save the university over £125,000 and over 1,200 tonnes of carbon. After the lease expires, the university will take ownership of the solar arrays at no cost and will benefit from the now free electricity generated by the solar panels.
The construction works will be carried out during the next few months by Brighton Energy Co-operative’s installation partner, Genfit.
source: University of Brighton