The study, commissioned by Smartestenergy.com, highlights a 24% increase in independently owned commercial-scale power projects in Britain last year.
This type of power plant is usually set up by property developers, landowners and farmers, or by industrial and manufacturing companies needing on-site generation.
Independent plants could power 3.9 million homes
Britain’s independently owned power projects are capable of producing 4.7 gigawatts of electricity, which is enough to keep the lights on in 3.9 million homes. According to Smartestenergy.com this electricity is worth approximately £770m.
Robert Groves, chief executive at Smartestenergy.com said: “From farmers developing new income streams, communities raising funds to improve local amenities or manufacturers looking to cut costs, a revolution in energy generation is under way.
“Recent years have seen thousands of energy entrepreneurs invest in generation projects against a backdrop of rising electricity bills, growing awareness of environmental issues and the introduction of renewable energy subsidy schemes.”
The power generated from independent projects adds up
Many of these of these independent plants pale in comparison to government schemes and investments. However, when combined these projects, which range from individual turbines planted in fields to a small biomass facilities, represent a significant energy source for the country.
The report also found that wind and solar power make up around half of the independent projects in both number and output. Nine in ten of all new initiatives are either wind or solar powered.