Toyota in Derby has switched on its 17,000 solar panels which it hopes will reduce its business electricity bills and save energy.
Utility Exchange reported back in June that the Toyota factory at Burnaston in Derbyshire was installing solar panels at a cost of £10 million. The green electricity will be used at the plant which currently makes the Auris, Auris Hybrid and Avensis cars.
As business electricity prices rise Toyota hopes to reduce energy bills by using green electricity generated by the solar panels which cover an area the equivalent of four and a half football pitches. The company hopes the solar array will generate enough electricity to build 7,000 cars.
It is a joint project with British Gas which has funded and installed the solar panels. As reported previously it means British Gas will benefit from the feed-in tariff while Toyota benefits from the free business electricity.
A spokesperson from Toyota said “The solar array is a key part of Toyota’s sustainable plant vision in which manufacturing operations are designed to work in harmony with their local community and surrounding environment”.
The managing director of British Gas said “With energy costs increasing and a tough financial climate, all businesses are looking at ways to cut their bills as well as reduce their carbon emissions. Solar power has the potential to make this happen and really revolutionise the way Britain’s homes and businesses generate energy”.