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4,500 solar panels at Babraham Park & Ride will enable EV charging and supply Addenbrooke’s with green energy



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The installation of 4,500 solar panels at Babraham Park & RIde site is due to begin in mid-August.

It will transform the site into a renewable energy generator, providing green electricity directly for cars, buses and taxis, with an initial significant surplus provided to Addenbrooke’s Hospital.

How the solar panels will look at Babraham Park & RIde. Image: Cambridgeshire County Council
How the solar panels will look at Babraham Park & RIde. Image: Cambridgeshire County Council

The panels will generate up to 2.5MW of electricity and are expected to save more than 6,600 tonnes in carbon emissions over 30 years.

The innovative micro-grid project from Cambridgeshire County Council will be delivered in partnership with Bouygues E&S Solutions.

Cllr Lorna Dupre (Lib Dem, Sutton), chair of the county council’s environment and green investment committee, said: “We are fully committed to tackling the climate emergency and this innovative project is another example of our ongoing key work. I am delighted that the scheme has taken another important step forward and I’m excited to see it take shape.

How the solar panels will look at Babraham Park & RIde. Image: Cambridgeshire County Council
How the solar panels will look at Babraham Park & RIde. Image: Cambridgeshire County Council

“The project will offer many benefits for years to come. Overall, it reduces the site’s carbon footprint generating local energy for electric vehicle chargers, also helping to improve local air quality and supporting national goals of electrifying transport.”

Planning permission was granted in late 2020 for the project, which is similar to the one at St Ives Park & Ride and form part of the vision for smart energy grids across the Cmabridge region’s transport network.

Due to be completed in autumn 2023, the work will be carried out in three phases to keep as much of the car park open as possible.

Overhead electronic VMS display boards on routes to the Cambridge Biomedical Campus will keep travellers updated.

How the solar panels will look at Babraham Park & RIde. Image: Cambridgeshire County Council
How the solar panels will look at Babraham Park & RIde. Image: Cambridgeshire County Council

The council noted that investment in projects to generate local energy was a key action in the its Climate Change and Environment Strategy, approved in February 2022.

Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (CUH), which runs Addenbrooke’s and the Rosie hospitals, plans to halve its carbon emissions by 2032 and become a net-zero organisation by 2045.

CUH launched its Action 50 Green Plan in June 2022, setting out how the trust will save more than 2,000 tonnes of carbon from its direct emissions over the next three years.

Richard Hales, energy and sustainability manager at CUH, said: “We are delighted to be working with Cambridgeshire County Council on this exciting project which will directly supply green energy to our hospitals. Developing innovative partnerships like this are integral to our approach to addressing the climate emergency and continuing our trajectory to becoming a net-zero organisation by 2045.”



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