Industry

Brett Martin announces solar energy partnership with Lightsource BP

by FESPA Staff | 22/08/2018
Brett Martin announces solar energy partnership with Lightsource BP

Brett Martin, a leading manufacturer of polycarbonate, foam pvc and PETg plastic sheets for the signage and graphics industry are set to produce and benefit from combined renewable supply sources.

Brett Martin have announced that it is now acquiring renewable electricity from a solar installation that is funded and developed by Lightsource BP who are a global leader in the solar industry. In combination with the energy generated by Brett Martin’s onsite wind turbine the company now attains 25% of its energy from renewable sources.
 
Lightsource BP financed and operate the 6.42MWp solar installation near Belfast, the installation is hard-wired directly into Brett Martin’s facility just over a mile away. This is enough clean solar energy to power the equivalent of more than 1,600 homes. It provides approximately 14% of the centre’s annual electricity needs. The solar installation is built on over 35 acres of locally-owned farmland. It provides an estimated saving of 2,000 tonnes of carbon emissions every year which is equal to removing almost 1,000 cars from the road.
 
Brett Martin’s Managing Director, Laurence Martin says: “Brett Martin is currently experiencing substantial growth and development whilst experiencing an uplift in turnover of £17m to £152.4m since last year and a headcount increase of 138 in the same period. Our main activity of processing plastics is very energy intensive and since energy costs in Northern Ireland are approximately 25% more than the European average. Initiatives like this are vital in assisting us in maintaining our competitive edge in a global marketplace where 50% of our sales are exported.
 
In 2011, we were one of the first local manufacturers to install a wind turbine and now we deliver 11% of our energy costs.  The partnership with Lightsource BP now more than doubles our renewable footprint and in addition highlights our commitment to environmentally sensitive manufacturing practice.  We are very appreciative to the numerous local interest groups, statutory bodies and government agencies who provided help and assistance to both Lightsource BP and ourselves as we moved the project to completion.”
 
The Gibson Farm solar installation was developed and constructed alongside an in-depth biodiversity management plan which detailed planting measures created to support the local wildlife. This planting plan features seeding choices specifically designed to foster new insect and bird species, strengthening the biodiversity of the local area and providing substantial environmental benefits to the surrounding farmland.
 
Lightsource BP’s CEO, Nick Boyle commented: “We are excited to have developed this project in partnership with Brett Martin who join our other partners including Belfast International Airport, Bentley Motors and Thames Water in acquiring renewable electricity. Choosing to source solar electricity via private-wire offers Brett Martin a long-term hedging strategy against increasing costs in today's volatile energy market. We are delighted to work with local and international corporations to reduce costs and increase price visibility as well as to accelerate the global low-carbon transition.”
 
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