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Equinor confirms the construction of its first commercial battery storage asset

Front-of-meter battery storage site developed by Noriker
Front-of-meter battery storage site developed by Noriker.
(Photo: Noriker Power Ltd.)

Equinor approves final investment decision on the Blandford Road battery storage project in the south of the UK.

This will be the first commercial battery storage asset for Equinor, and the first project realized from the strategic partnership between Equinor and Noriker Power.

Olav Kolbeinstveit - portrait
Olav Kolbeinstveit, senior vice president for power and markets within Renewables at Equinor.

“Equinor aims to create a profitable renewables business by integrating battery storage assets in our portfolio in selected power markets. During the last 10 months we invested in two leading battery storage development companies, Noriker Power in the UK, and East Point Energy in the US. Today we took the next step and sanctioned our first commercial battery storage project”, says Olav Kolbeinstveit, senior vice president for power and markets within Renewables at Equinor.

Equinor acquired a 45% ownership share in Noriker Power Limited in December 2021. In addition to the equity investment, Equinor and Noriker have a strategic cooperation framework that grants Equinor the opportunity to directly participate in projects developed by Noriker. Blandford Road is the first project from Noriker’s pipeline that has been matured to an investment decision.

In the recently published British Energy Security Strategy, the UK Government announced an ambition of 95% of electricity by 2030 being low carbon. To deliver the Government’s ambitions for cleaner and more affordable electricity, development of storage infrastructure in the UK is critical. As the UK increases its share of renewable power, battery storage will help to solve the intermittency challenge and aid in the security of supply.

Ingrid Fossgard-Moser - portrait
Ingrid Fossgard-Moser, vice president for energy storage development within Renewables at Equinor.

“Our ownership position in Noriker gives us a platform to build an energy storage portfolio in the UK. We expect to sanction up to three battery storage projects in the country during the next 6-9 months. A portfolio of flexible storage assets will broaden and diversify Equinor’s energy offerings in the UK and strengthen our role as a reliable supplier of energy”, says Ingrid Fossgard-Moser, vice president for energy storage development within Renewables at Equinor.

The Blandford Road project is a 25 MW / 50 MWh battery storage asset located in Dorset in southern England. The project will incorporate CATL lithium-ion battery racks and connect to the SSE distribution network providing capability to manage power intermittency, balance supply and demand and deliver grid services to SSE and National Grid.

To realize the project Grupotec Renewable Limited has been appointed to provide engineering, procurement and construction (EPC), while Noriker will manage and develop the project for Equinor.

“We are really pleased to mark this important milestone in our partnership with Equinor. Our approach to technical integration and taking a full life-cycle view when developing and operating projects, will allow Equinor to truly optimise value as a long-term asset owner”, says Marc Thomas, managing director of Noriker Power.

The project will start construction in January 2023 and is expected to be operational in Q3 of the same year.

Equinor’s positions within battery storage

Equinor’s focus for battery storage has been the UK and the US East – two of the most advanced markets for battery storage globally, where we have strong positions as a company and our largest offshore wind positions.

We have entered these markets through acquisitions in local companies characterized by high quality teams, proven track record and attractive project pipelines.

From our side, we contribute with a long-term industrial perspective, capital, and advanced trading capabilities through the wholly owned energy trading house Danske Commodities.

We aim to capture value through transforming and scaling the businesses together with the local teams and leveraging synergies with the rest of Equinor portfolio.

Today we own

  • 45% of Noriker Power Ltd, headquartered in Gloucester, UK.
    Noriker Power has a pipeline in battery storage and hybrid energy projects across the UK
  • 100% of East Point Energy LLC, headquartered in Charlottesville, Virginia, US. East Point Energy has a pipeline of battery storage projects focused on the US East Coast

About Equinor in the UK

Equinor is a leading broad energy partner to the UK, supplying natural gas from Norway, developing domestic energy resources and generating low-carbon electricity.

Equinor has been operating in the UK for nearly 40 years and aims to reach net zero emissions globally by 2050. Headquartered in Norway, the company employs 22,000 people globally, and over 650 in the UK. Equinor supports the UK economy by investing billions in crucial energy infrastructure, working with over 700 suppliers across the country.

In 2021 Equinor supplied nearly 30% of the UK’s demand for natural gas and around one fifth of its demand for oil, both produced with one of the lowest carbon footprints in the industry. It operates the Mariner oil field and is maturing the Rosebank project with plans to make it one of the most energy efficient developments in the UKCS in line with the UK Government’s North Sea Transition Deal supply decarbonisation goals.

Equinor currently powers around 750,000 UK homes through its three operational wind farms; Sheringham Shoal, Dudgeon, and the world’s first floating wind farm, Hywind Scotland. In partnership with SSE Renewables and Eni Plenitude, Equinor is building the largest offshore wind farm in the world, Dogger Bank, off the Northeast coast of England, and is maturing its plans to extend both the Dudgeon and Sheringham Shoal wind farms.

The company is also a leader in both carbon capture and storage (CCS) and hydrogen, developing low-carbon power with carbon capture, hydrogen, and CO2 transport and storage projects in the UK.

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