SSE Renewables has taken a final investment decision to start construction of a 150MW battery energy storage system (BESS) project in Warrington, Cheshire, at the site of the former Fiddler’s Ferry coal-fired power station.
The 150MW/300MWh grid-scale battery is the fourth SSE Renewables BESS project to reach a final investment decision, taking the total megawatts of battery storage projects now in the construction phase to 670MW.
Fiddler’s Ferry was formerly owned and operated by SSE before being decommissioned in March 2020, with final demolition of its cooling towers taking place last month.
The new battery storage project will be able to make use of the existing grid connection already in place.
Once completed, the battery storage facility at Fidder’s Ferry will be capable of running for up to two hours at a time.
When fully operational, the BESS site will be capable of storing power for release back to the UK National Grid when it is needed the most – helping to manage peaks of energy demand.
This flexibility helps balance energy supply and demand more effectively and maximise the potential of available renewable technology to power the grid – even when the sun is not shining, or the wind is not blowing.
Finlay McCutcheon, director of onshore renewables at SSE Renewables, said: “We now have 670MW of battery projects in the UK that are in the construction phase, which is a significant increase from where we were 12 months ago.
“Battery storage has a vital role to play in helping the UK and Ireland decarbonise and our project team deserve huge credit for achieving this latest milestone at Fiddler’s Ferry."
Richard Cave-Bigley, director of solar and battery, SSE Renewables, added: “It is very exciting to have taken a final investment decision for our 150MW Fiddler’s Ferry BESS project in Warrington.
“Similar to our Ferrybridge project, our grid-scale battery at Fiddler’s Ferry will be built on what was a former SSE-owned coal-fired power station and highlights the transition away from fossil fuels towards a net zero future.
“Our solar and battery business continues to grow and thrive.”
Taking a final investment decision on Fiddler’s Ferry, which was made at the end of December, is the latest milestone in solar and battery development for SSE Renewables, which has a secured 1.2GW pipeline of solar and battery projects, with a further 1.3GW under development in the UK and Ireland.
More than half of the 1.2GW secured pipeline in the UK and Ireland is now in the construction phase, and SSE Renewables has also acquired a 500MW pipeline of solar projects currently under development in Poland.
SSE Renewables is investing around £7bn to 2027, or almost £4m a day on average, to support the delivery of SSE’s Net Zero Acceleration Programme to address climate change head on.
This includes plans to increase installed renewable energy capacity to around 9GW by 2027, including the delivery of the world’s largest offshore wind farm in construction.