Home   News   Article

Plans for a major battery storage plant near Reay 'under consideration'

By Gordon Calder

Register for free to read more of the latest local news. It's easy and will only take a moment.

Click here to sign up to our free newsletters!

A MAJOR battery storage plant could be built near Reay if a planning application from a Manchester-based company gets the go-ahead.

Ylem Energy Ltd wants permission to construct a 37 megawatt battery storage system to the north of the A836 road near Gunscroft, Lower Dounreay to provide electricity to the National Grid at times of high demand or low generation by renewable technologies.

The company says the design project has not been finalised although it is likely to comprise of series of modular battery storage units at a height of around three metres, transformers, cooling units, and two control units. The majority of the structures would be hidden behind the surrounding field boundary. Access to the site would be from the A836.

The proposed site is approximately one kilometre north east of Reay village on agricultural land currently used for grazing. It is bounded by a combination of dry stone wall and post and rail fencing. The nearest residential properties are located 450 metres to the west.

"We are not aware of any ecological, landscape or heritage designations within two kilometres of the proposed site," states the company in its application to Highland Council. It points out that the project would be classed as "a major development" as it is over 20 megawatts of battery energy storage.

The application from Ylem Energy Ltd is "under consideration" by Highland Council
The application from Ylem Energy Ltd is "under consideration" by Highland Council

A report, which accompanies the application states: "Scotland is uniquely positioned in the United Kingdom when it comes to power generation and energy infrastructure. High amounts of renewable generation, driven by various initiatives from the devolved government have seen a rapid expansion in large scale offshore and onshore wind power in Scotland. This means that Scotland is consistently ranked among the lowest regions of the UK when considering its carbon intensity.

"However, this also means that Scotland regularly has a surplus of generation when compared to its demand and the transmission network designed to transport this renewable energy to the rest of the UK has struggled to keep pace. For this reason, the ability to store large amounts of generation to help regulate power flows north and south of the border is essential," it adds.

Ylem Energy has installed more than 400 megawatts of power generation and energy storage, enough to power one million homes.

Following the development of renewable energy projects in China, South America, South Africa and throughout Europe, the company is now focused on the development and construction of advanced battery energy storage which, it claims, enables better balancing of the grid.

The report says: "Since 2020, Ylem Energy have invested in projects that support the growth of renewables to help the UK achieve legally binding targets for tackling climate change and to decarbonise the grid. We undertake the entire process in-house. We are privately funded, meaning we don’t depend on securing third-party financing. We develop, build and operate all of our power generation projects with our own team and for the long term."

The company said it has written to all residents within one kilometre of the proposed development site and advertised its plans locally. A public meeting was also held in Reay.

The application was lodged with Highland Council in June and is said to be under consideration.

Do you want to respond to this article? If so, click here to submit your thoughts and they may be published in print.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies - Learn More