Havering Council is looking to harness the power of the sun by developing solar parks on its own land to generate a significant extra income for the borough.
These solar parks will allow Havering to become the first borough in London to generate renewable energy on a large scale to make money, which would be used to protect and improve frontline services. Energy produced in this way is clean, sustainable and renewable.
The land on which the solar parks will be constructed will be underused space that will result in few if any adverse effects on community usage. Once the solar park is past its useful life, the panels can be removed and the site will revert to its previous condition.
If the energy supplied by solar parks is used locally, local residents, schools and businesses could potentially save up to 20 per cent on electricity bills. This is one of many options available to the Council once the solar parks are established.
Creating solar energy is nothing new in the borough. There are many homes, schools and businesses that currently use solar energy as their power supply. All of this is clean, green energy that will make a real impact on Havering’s carbon footprint.
The Council is pledging that it will only develop solar parks with community support and when the best income for the community is guaranteed.
The proposed solar parks will also have a positive impact on local biodiversity for a range of plant and animal species, in particular broad leaved plants, grasses, wild flowers, butterflies, bees and birds. Part of the Council’s proposals would be to work with local beekeepers to promote healthy honeybee populations, as well as Britain’s rarer bumblebees, in and around the solar parks.
Councillor Osman Dervish, Cabinet Member for the Environment said:
“Building solar parks to generate both power and money, is an idea which I support as not only would Havering be leading the way for solar power in the capital, it would more importantly be providing the Council with a significant and regular income to maintain and fund future services.
Of course, there must be full public consultation, so we fully appreciate the views of local residents and businesses.”