Home » One of UK’s largest solar farms gets government approval

One of UK’s largest solar farms gets government approval

by Liam Turner
EDF moves forward with 100MW solar farm duo

Plans for a new solar farm in Dorset, set to become one of the UK’s largest, have been approved by the government.

The Development Consent Order (DCO) means EDF Renewables, the firm behind the plans, is now a step closer to starting construction on the Longfield Solar Farm site.

The DCO application, which is the first DCO solar project developed by EDF Renewables in the UK, was submitted in February 2022 following 18 months of engagement and consultation with stakeholders and communities.

Ben Fawcett, head of Solar at EDF Renewables UK, said: “I am delighted that, after months of careful consideration, the government has given planning consent for Longfield Solar Farm; it is a significant endorsement of our proposals. 

“I would like to thank everyone who contributed to our consultation and the public examination.

“The feedback we received from residents, local authorities, environmental groups and many others has helped shape our plans.

“We will continue to work closely with them to make sure we minimise the impact of construction and maximise the huge opportunities for the area.”

Located near Chelmsford in Essex, EDF Renewables says the Longfield farm will make an “important contribution” to the UK’s future energy mix by providing enough clean, secure energy to power over 96,000 homes every year.

It will also kick-start a programme of research to look at the positive impacts large-scale solar farms can have on biodiversity and wildlife in the UK.

The research will tie into Longfield’s plans and commitments to deliver biodiversity enhancements through habitat restoration and management.

EDF Renewables UK says it will consider the detail of the consent and the programme for delivery of the project, before engaging with stakeholders and the community on plans to bring the project forward into construction.

Construction will last for approximately two years, and after a period of site commissioning, EDF Renewables hopes to be exporting electricity to the national grid at the start of 2028.

Read next: Plans unveiled for major wind farm in Scotland

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