RWE, the leading power producer in the UK, has secured Contracts for Difference (CfD) for nine of its upcoming renewable energy ventures in the latest Auction Round 5.
These CfD awards, granted by the Low Carbon Contracts Company on behalf of the UK Government, stem from successful bids on three onshore, four solar, and two solar projects combined with battery storage for renewable energy. The indexed strike price for RWE’s onshore projects stands at £52.29/MWh, while solar projects are at £47.00/MWh, both based on 2012 prices.
Collectively, RWE’s projects will contribute over 450 MW of renewable electricity generation capacity in the UK. This capacity can supply power to a multitude of households, bolster local supply chains and employment opportunities, and play a vital role in advancing the UK’s net-zero and energy security objectives. This auction success highlights RWE’s ongoing commitment to invest up to £15 billion by 2030 in the development of new clean energy infrastructure in the UK. This initiative includes the construction of RWE’s inaugural large-scale solar projects in the UK, following the acquisition of JBM Solar last year. The commencement of the first projects is expected later this year and full-scale construction is slated for 2024.
Katja Wünschel, CEO Onshore Wind and Solar Europe & Australia at RWE Renewables, said, “Today’s auction success clearly demonstrates RWE’s drive and ambition to continue to develop onshore wind and drive forward an ambitious solar portfolio, beginning with the construction of our first solar project in the UK, as one of the country’s leading solar energy partners. It’s an important success for the teams supporting those technologies, especially those behind our rapidly expanding new solar business in the UK. The expansion of renewable energies must be swift and decisive if we’re to achieve the government’s net zero targets and RWE is playing its part by targeting the rapid deployment of an exciting pipeline of new onshore and solar projects.”
While the UK has traditionally been recognized on the global stage for its excellence in executing renewable energy initiatives through the CfD mechanism, particularly in fostering the world’s most advanced offshore wind market, the latest auction round yielded an unexpected outcome. However, no offshore wind projects managed to secure CfD offers on this occasion.
Tom Glover RWE UK Country Chair, added, “Whilst we are delighted with the success of onshore and solar technologies in this year’s auction we are very concerned that no offshore wind capacity was secured. It is hugely important, given the UK’s notable clean energy and net zero ambitions, that opportunities to bring forward the further deployment of low cost renewables be maximised for all viable technologies in all future auctions, including offshore wind as well as onshore wind and solar. It was therefore very disappointing that, despite clear warnings from the industry, the Government took no action to address the rising costs for all renewable technologies and the supply chain challenges they face. We now believe that the UK’s ambitions for a five-fold offshore wind growth by 2030 and a net zero power system by 2035 are unlikely to be met without decisive government action – our industry needs the certainty of stable, future CfD Auction Rounds based on sustainable pricing, separate pots for offshore wind, and realistic assumptions.”