UK's Biggest Solar Energy System for Port of Liverpool

The Port of Liverpool
Updated Published

The Port of Liverpool is initiating a sustainability enhancement program for Peel Ports' operations, aiming to further reduce the port's emissions. The initial phase of this ambitious plan involves setting up the UK’s most extensive roof-mounted solar power system and upgrading the current wind turbines along the River Mersey.

This effort marks the beginning of a 25-year partnership with E.ON, the UK’s second-biggest port operator, which could result in the installation of up to 63,000 solar panels over 26 port buildings. This coverage is equivalent to the size of 18 football pitches.

These solar installations are projected to produce as much as 31MW of green energy, supplying electricity equivalent to the annual consumption of over 10,000 typical UK households. While the final design will determine the precise number of panels and their energy output, this solar project is anticipated to be the UK's largest, meeting about 25% of the Port’s yearly electricity requirements.

Already, over 6,000 solar panels have arrived at the port for installation on the soon-to-be-completed Alexandra Dock warehouse, spanning 240,000 square feet. To minimize local disruption, the project will utilize existing structures within the port’s current boundaries, bringing in all materials and technology by sea. E.ON is financing this project, which is expected to conclude by mid-2026.

Claudio Veritiero, CEO of Peel Ports Group, stated, “Ports of the future need to become more sustainable environments and we must play our part in a greener supply chain. There is still work to do, but this project is a huge step for Peel Ports Group in cutting emissions and driving our ambition to become a net-zero port operator by 2040.”

The initiative is set to cut more than 6,500 tonnes of CO2e emissions annually within the port, equivalent to removing over 2,250 cars from the road, according to Peel Ports and E.ON.

E.ON has pledged to prioritize local contractors for the project's execution and maintenance over its 25-year lifespan.

The next phase will see the replacement of five existing wind turbines with four newer, larger ones capable of generating almost 20MW. This move is a significant stride towards Peel Ports Group's goal of powering the Port of Liverpool solely with on-site renewable energy, including during periods when solar output is lower. This phase could start by 2027/28, pending planning approval and community consultations.