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The wind turbine, the farmland and Brett Martin

Brett Martin, a global supplier of plastic products for the construction, fabrication, print and graphic industries, is now procuring renewable electricity thanks to a new partnership with Lightsource BP.

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Geoff Stewart, finance director, Laurence Martin, managing director at Brett Martin and Nick Boyle, CEO at Lightsource BP

Built on over 35 acres of locally-owned farmland just over a mile away from the Brett Martin facility near Belfast, the 6.42MWp solar installation will provide an estimated saving of 2,000 tonnes of carbon emissions each year – the equivalent to taking nearly 1000 cars off the road.

Developed and funded by Lightsource BP, experts in large-scale solar projects, the new solar installation combined with Brett Martin’s onsite wind turbine now means that 25 percent of Brett Martin’s supply now comes from renewable sources.

Brett Martin’s onsite wind turbine now means that 25 percent of Brett Martin’s supply now comes from renewable sources

Laurence Martin, managing director at Brett Martin explains: “Brett Martin is experiencing a period of significant growth and development recording an uplift in turnover of £17m to £152.4m since last year and a headcount increase of 138 in the same period.  Our core activity of processing plastics is very energy intensive and with energy costs in Northern Ireland at around 25% more than the European average, initiatives like this are critical to help us maintain our competitive edge in a global marketplace where 50% of our sales are exported.  We were one of the first local manufacturers to install a wind turbine in 2011, now delivering 11% of our energy costs.”

The solar farm, which is directly hard-wired into Brett Martin’s facility, was developed alongside an extensive biodiversity plan for the company to support and strengthen local wildlife. Being in a rural area, the Brett Martin factory is hoping to significantly improve the surrounding farmland alongside generating cleaner energy.
Martin adds: “The partnership with Lightsource now more than doubles our renewable footprint and also highlights our commitment to environmentally sensitive manufacturing practice.  We are very grateful to the many local interest groups, statutory bodies and government agencies who provided help and assistance to both Lightsource and ourselves as we progressed the project to completion.”

Nick Boyle, CEO at Lightsource BP says: “We’re delighted to have developed this project with Brett Martin, who join other Lightsource BP partnerships, including Belfast International Airport, Bentley Motors and Thames Water, in procuring renewable electricity. Choosing to source solar electricity via private-wire provides Brett Martin with a long-term hedging strategy against rising costs in today's volatile energy market. We’re proud to be working with corporations both locally and internationally to cut costs and increase price visibility, as well as to accelerate the global low-carbon transition."

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