Nissan switches on solar farm to power UK car production (including LEAF)

Nissan switches on solar farm to power UK car production (including LEAF)

Nissan expanded its renewable electricity generation in the company's Sunderland Plant, UK.

The latest additions adds a 4.75 MW solar array, with some 19,000 solar panels - which is on top of the 6.6 MW in place from 10 wind turbines, displacing some 7% of electricity usage.

Nissan states that a total 11.35 MW of power will supply enough electricity to build over 31,000 cars a year.

Nissan Sunderland Plant is currently the largest car manufacturing facility in the UK.

Recently, the Japanese auto maker passed 50,000 LEAFs (and batteries) produced locally at the facility. In the near future, Sunderland has also been confirmed to produce also generation batteries (it does not build the current 30 kWh packs in the 2016 model).

"Nissan has switched on a new solar farm at its biggest manufacturing site in Europe, the latest landmark in the company’s journey towards Intelligent Mobility.

Made of up 19,000 photo-voltaic panels, the new 4.75MW facility is now fully operational at Nissan Sunderland Plant, as Nissan strives towards its twin goals of zero emissions and zero fatalities.

The solar farm has been installed alongside 10 wind turbines already generating clean power for Nissan in Sunderland, the European centre of production for the all-electric Nissan LEAF and its batteries."

"Nissan began integrating renewable energy sources in Sunderland in 2005 when the company installed its first wind turbines on site. These 10 wind turbines contribute 6.6MW power, with the 4.75MW solar farm bringing the total output of renewables to 11.35MW in Sunderland. This equates to 7% of the plant’s electricity requirements, enough to build the equivalent of 31,374 vehicles.

The solar farm has been developed and installed within the loop of Nissan’s vehicle test track in Sunderland by partner company European Energy Photovoltaics, with 100% of the electricity generated to be used by Nissan.

Its installation comes as Nissan celebrates its 30th anniversary of manufacturing in the UK, having become the biggest UK car plant of all time and now supporting nearly 40,000 jobs in Britain in vehicle design, engineering, production, parts distribution,  sales and marketing, dealer network and supply chain."

Colin Lawther, Nissan’s Senior Vice President for Manufacturing, Purchasing and Supply Chain Management in Europe, said

“Renewable energy is fundamental to Nissan’s vision for Intelligent Mobility.”

“We have built over 50,000 Nissan LEAFs in Europe, and the industry-leading new 250km-range LEAF is now available. With 10 wind turbines already generating energy for our Sunderland plant, this new solar farm will further reduce the environmental impact of Nissan vehicles during their entire lifecycle.”