Northumberland Council unveils plans for £2.3m solar carport

It would include 60 new charging points for electric vehicles

Solar panel installation

Plans to build a £2.3 million carport powered by solar panels have been unveiled by Northumberland County Council.

It would include 60 new charging points for electric vehicles (EVs), built into the solar farm structure, which is expected to provide around 40% of the County Hall’s electricity needs.

When combined with the solar panels already installed on the County Hall’s roof, that would take the total annual power provided by renewable sources to approximately half, equivalent to saving around 240 tonnes of carbon every year.

The council expects half of the funding to be provided by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

Council Leader Peter Jackson said: “We’ve already made clear our commitment to reducing our carbon footprint and becoming carbon neutral by 2030 and this innovative scheme shows what can be achieved right on our doorstep.

“We know electric and hybrid vehicles are becoming increasingly popular and we want to encourage this take up by providing as many charging points as possible in the county. Assuming we get the 50% ERDF grant, the energy savings from the project are expected to more than cover the cost of our initial investment.”

If approved, the project would be up and running by the summer of 2021.

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