Lightsource BP is a global leader in the funding, development and long-term management of solar PV projects. Our organisation represents a strategic and powerful partnership which is set to further accelerate the low-carbon transition and boost the growth of solar power worldwide.
Our revenue model is focused on capturing value throughout the life of the asset, integrating in-house development, operational management and asset financing expertise to optimise competitiveness. Our goal is to play a vital role in shaping the future of global energy delivery by deploying at least 8GW of solar capacity worldwide in the next five years, based on a develop and operate strategy.
Brett Martin, one of Northern Ireland’s most successful independent manufacturing companies, is now procuring renewable electricity from Lightsource BP, a leading global solar company. Lightsource BP financed, completed and now operate the 6.42MWp solar installation at Gibson Farm in Mallusk, Newtownabbey which is hard-wired directly into Brett Martin’s facility just over a mile away.
Brett Martin purchases the renewable energy generated at Gibson Farm from Lightsource BP via a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) that guarantees a fixed, index-linked price for the next 25 years. This long-term price visibility provides Brett Martin with a way to hedge against fluctuations in the energy market, and to protect themselves from unforeseen price hikes.
The solar installation has an output power capacity of 6.42MWp (Megawatts-peak) – enough clean solar energy to power the equivalent of over 1,600 homes, providing approximately 14% of the centre’s annual electricity demand. The solar installation, built on over 35 acres of locally-owned farmland, provides an estimated saving of 3,700 tonnes of carbon emissions each year, equal to taking nearly 1,800 cars off the road.
Laurence Martin, Managing Director, Brett Martin explains, “Brett Martin is experiencing a period of significant growth and development recording an uplift in turnover of £17m to £152.4m since last year and a headcount increase of 138 in the same period. Our core activity of processing plastics is very energy intensive and with energy costs in Northern Ireland at around 25% more than the European average initiatives like this are critical to help us maintain our competitive edge in a global marketplace where over 50% of our sales are exported. We were one of the first local manufacturers to install a wind turbine in 2011 delivering 11% of our energy costs. The partnership with Lightsource BP now more than doubles our renewable footprint and also highlights our commitment to environmentally sensitive manufacturing practice. We are very grateful to the many local interest groups statutory bodies and government agencies who provided help and assistance to both Lightsource BP and ourselves as we progressed the project to completion.”
The Gibson Farm solar installation was developed and constructed alongside an in-depth biodiversity management plan, detailing planting measures designed to support local wildlife. This planting plan includes seeding choices specifically designed to foster new insect and bird species, strengthening the biodiversity of the local area and providing significant environmental benefits to the surrounding farmland.
Nick Boyle, CEO at Lightsource BP, said: “We’re delighted to have developed this project with Brett Martin, who join other Lightsource BP partnerships, including Belfast International Airport, Bentley Motors and Thames Water, in procuring renewable electricity. Choosing to source solar electricity via private-wire provides Brett Martin with a long-term hedging strategy against rising costs in today’s volatile energy market. We’re proud to be working with corporations both locally and internationally to cut costs and increase price visibility, as well as to accelerate the global low-carbon transition.”