The growing importance of renewables
Renewable energy is an important element of our SEGRO 2020 strategy and is key to improving the environmental performance of our portfolio. Our aim is to increase our renewable energy generating capability across the Group where there is a business case to do so. SEGRO goes beyond the minimum renewable energy requirements necessary to achieve planning permission and installs much larger systems than would have been required by base build where possible. We aim to share the benefit of these systems with our occupiers by agreeing either free or reduced cost energy tariffs for the duration of the customer’s lease.
In the UK our annual energy generation from photovoltaic panels is approximately 650,000 KWh – the equivalent of saving over 300 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year, enough energy to power around 140 UK homes per year. Our customers are supplied with green electricity and any excess energy that is not used by the building is directed back into the National Grid.
Exceeding our renewable energy commitments
2015 has been a very successful year in terms of our renewable energy commitments. We have continued to grow our renewable energy portfolio with projects in the UK and the acquisition of Vailog in Italy. For 2016, we will continue to assess opportunities for further development though the UK will be a particular challenge due to the recent cuts in the financial incentive provided by Government, the ‘Feed in Tariff’. However, we are optimistic of finding ways to continue our development in this important area of our business, and are keeping abreast of changing legislation in each of our operating countries, particularly in light of the positive outcomes achieved at COP21 in Paris last year.
Throughout 2015, SEGRO continued to fund a renewable energy programme in the UK and delivered nine new solar photovoltaic (PV) and solar thermal projects across refurbishments, new developments and standing stock. These projects ranged in size from 1 KWp to 250 KWp – (this added 532 KWp of renewable energy capacity to the UK portfolio) equivalent to the power requirements of 10 UK homes per year. The systems cover between 4,000 and 40,000 sq ft of roof space. In all cases the customer purchased the energy created by the PV at an agreed rate from SEGRO. In one example, a 60 per cent (£10,000 per year approximately) cost saving was achieved. The energy generated by the PV projects is supplied to the occupier at a lower rate than provided by a grid supplier. Any excess energy is exported back to the grid for use elsewhere.